Class B Nordic Skiing Championship: GNG’s Woods completes sweep

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It was a Sugarloaf Sweep for Kaelyn Woods of Gray-New Gloucester High School.

The sophomore backed up her Class B classical title with a convincing freestyle victory Friday on the second and final day of the Nordic state championship meet at Sugarloaf Outdoor Center in Carrabassett Valley.

Competing in rainy and icy conditions that caused the start of her race to be pushed back by two hours, Woods completed the skate in 15:49, 17 seconds ahead of runner-up Elizabeth Martin of Freeport.

Woods, the Class B skimeister in 2013, became a Nordic sensation after giving up the Alpine half of that equation this season to focus on her cross-country training.

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She defeated Class A freestyle champion Sarah Wade of Mt. Blue and an all-star lineup in the Sassi Memorial at Rumford’s Black Mountain of Maine in January and carried the momentum into the championships. Woods dominated Thursday’s classical portion of the state meet by a staggering 28 seconds.

Fourth place in freestyle was her best finish at states a year ago, when she was 12th in classical.

Her team wound up fourth, in the middle of a tight battle for third with Maranacook and Caribou.

Yarmouth ran away with both the boys’ and girls’ team championships.

The boys’ tally was no competition after the Clippers claimed the top three spots.

Braden Becker was seeking a sweep for the second straight year, but teammate Carter Hall had other ideas. Hall finished in 13:29, with Sam Alexander (13:57) edging Becker by a second.

That left Yarmouth with a two-day total of 34 points, easily outdistancing Maranacook’s 63.

Maranacook’s tandem of Ethan Harriman (14:04.9) and Luca DeAngelis (14:09.8) were fourth and fifth.

Freeport was third with 128 points, followed by Caribou (150), Gray-New Gloucester (164), Mt. Abram (226) and Cape Elizabeth (238).

Thomas Faraday of Mt. Abram was eighth with a time of 14:27.3. Eric Wilcox was ninth at 14:36.8 for Gray-New Gloucester.

Leading their respective local teams were Colin Liscord of Kents Hill (42nd), and Alex Greenleaf (44th) and Chad Richards (47th) of Spruce Mountain.

The margin was even wider in the chase for the girls’ team title, with Yarmouth again placing four skiers in the top 10 and coasting home ahead of Freeport, 49-89.

Emma Torres (16:12, third) and Lucy Alexander (16:21, fourth) led the Clippers’ charge. Freeport’s Lily Johnston, runner-up to Woods in classical, was fifth.

Anne McKee of Kents Hill was a strong eighth in a time of 16:50.8. Hannah Despres (17:22.4, 12th) paced Maranacook.

Maranacook (136) topped Gray-New Gloucester (150) and Caribou (153) for third, with Kents Hill (175) and Cape Elizabeth (238) rounding out the field.

Reilly Romanoski of Mt. Abram (25th) and Karlee Noll of Spruce Mountain (43rd) were top performers for their squads.

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