Athletes of the Week: Ruling the slopes

The Clarkston Girls JV Ski team dominated the hill at the Don Thomas Invitational at Pine Knob, Jan. 31.
The Wolves won the overall race and took home the trophy for the second consecutive year.
“The Don Thomas Cup has been a significant race for our JV athletes in Southeast Michigan for many years,” said Brian Popelier, assistant coach. “ We are very proud of our athletes’ growth and progress from the start of the season, which contributed to their success in this race. The girls team sweeping the top five in the Super G race and winning overall shows how deep we are and how competitive we’ll be in years to come.”

The Clarkston skiers won the Don Thomas Invitational. Photo provided

The Wolves sweeping the top five positions in the Super G race were sophomore Charlotte Janczarek in first place; freshman Trisha Verbeke, second; sophomore Audrey Brancheau, third; freshman Cameron Brosky, fourth; and freshman Elke Roeser, fifth. The finishing times of junior Brooke Coram, freshman Sydney Draksler, senior Mia Farella, sophomore Maddie Blomberg, and freshman Vanessa Milcallef supported the team against 85 other racers.
At the Giant Slalom race, four skiers medaled with Verbeke finishing in first place; Brosky, second; Brancheau, fourth; and Roeser, sixth. Draksler, Coram, Milcallef, Farella, Blomberg and Janczarek also competed in the race and topped 15 teams in the Giant Slalom.
The Pine Knob JV Divisional race was held at Pine Knob, Feb. 3. The girls took first place again, with four winning medals: Janczarek in first place; Roeser, second; Brancheau, fifth; and Farella, ninth. Draksler, Coram and Milcallef also raced.
The Clarkston Boys JV team finished in sixth place and was challenged by some tough competitors in the Giant Slalom. They were led by sophomore A.J. Damone in 21st place; freshman Bo Begley, 34th; Hunter Houghton, 42nd; and senior Jacob Draksler, 48th.  Also racing were junior Miles Benson and freshman Bedford Muzzy.
The top finishers for Clarkston in the Super G race were Damone in 22nd place and Begley in 36th place.  Out of 141 racers, Houghton, Benson, Draksler and Muzzy gave an energetic effort as well.
The boys finished fifth in the Pine Knob JV Divisional race. Begley led with a 16th place finish with Houghton in 26th place; Damone, 29th; and Muzzy, 35th, scoring. Draksler and Benson also raced.