NEWRY — Sarah Klein tried not to think about it.
The Mountain Valley junior tried to put her first run of the giant slalom out of her head Thursday afternoon.
Klein had posted the best time after the opening run at the Class C Alpine state championships at Sunday River. Klein knew she had a chance to win the state title but didn’t want such an idea to cross her mind — not until the final run was over.
“I pretty much put tunnel vision on and just imagined that I didn’t do the first run,” said Klein. “If I’m banking on my first run, then I know I won’t do as well on my second run. I have to make sure I try my hardest.”
So Klein wasn’t feeling comfortable or cocky. She was simply trying to ski her best, and it worked. After posting a 41.53 in the first run, Klein skied a 42.42 in the second. That gave her a total of 1:23.9 and the giant slalom title.
“I was hoping to get either first or second,” said Klein, who finished second last year. “I feel really good about my runs.”
The Mountain Valley girls’ team was atop the Alpine standings after the first day. The Falcons finished with a total of 50 points followed by Fort Kent at 51. Telstar was third with 89.
In the overall, girls’ standings, combing both Nordic and Alpine events, Fort Kent still leads with 152 while Telstar is second at 348 with Mountain Valley third with 392.
The Mountain Valley boys’ also finished in first after the first day of Alpine results. The Falcons finished with 23, led by a second-place finish by Nick Newman. Fort Kent was second with 26. Telstar was third with 46.
In the overall boys’ team standings, Fort Kent is comfortably ahead with 138. Mountain Valley is second with 333 followed by Telstar with 422.
The alpine ski championships continue Friday at Sunday River with the slalom races.
Klein was the 19th skier to start Thursday, but she produced a nice run that put her atop the standings from the beginning.
“My first run, I felt really fast,” Klein said. “I’ve been doing race camp at Black Mountain, and it’s really helped me a lot.”
Fort Kent’s Alexa Pelletier was second after the first run at 41.90 followed by Winthrop’s Annalise Guerette in 42.46. Klein knew she was in position to win but blocked that first run out of her mind. She went after the second run, hoping to produce similar results.
“My second run, I felt a little bit slower in the flats down at the bottom,” Klein said. “I think I could have pushed my boot a little bit more, but it felt like a good run.”
It was good enough to give her the title. Guerette had a second run of 41.69. That gave her second overall in 1:24.1. Pelletier was third in 1:25.4. Mountain Valley’s Katie Collette, last year’s winner, finished fourth in 1:25.8. She had a 43.62 in the first run but skied faster in the second with a 42.19.
Two other locals finished in the top 10. Monmouth’s Rebekah Bryant was seventh in 1:29.4 and Winthrop’s Amy Dehass was 10 in 1:30.3.
In the boys’ race, Newman, a freshman, posted a superb time of 40.15 in his first run. That put him ahead early and set him up nicely for a chance to win in his second run.
“I was pretty happy with my first run,” Newman said. “I was hoping for something a little faster when I saw (Louis Frumer) come down through, but I was definitely happy with that run.”
Waynflete’s Frumer got everyone’s attention with a 37.88 in his first run. No other skier finished under 40 seconds.
“I knew that there were other skiers that could do pretty well here,” Newman said. “I was expecting something like that. I was still happy with how I did.”
Frumer followed up her first run with an even better time in the second, finishing in 37.47. That put him in command of the top spot. That allowed Newman to just focus on doing his best on his second try.
“I didn’t think about the first run and I focused on going as fast as I could,” Newman said. “I was just trying to lay down the best run I could.”
He produced an ever better time in the second run, finishing in 40.09. That secured him second overall. Frumer won in 1:15.4. Newman finished at 1:20.2.
“I wanted to get a podium and if I didn’t get a podium, I wanted to at least be in the top 10,” Newman said. “So I was pretty happy with how I did.”
Fort Kent’s Andrew Paradis and Carter Voisine finished third and fourth respectively. Mountain Valley took the next two spots. Christopher Bourret was fifth in 1:26.0, and Nate Legere claimed sixth in 1:27.0.
Other locals in the top 10 were Telstar’s Greg Wheeler in eighth, teammate Aaron Speakman in ninth and Mountain Valley’s Conner Woods in 10th. The Falcons also placed Joseph Richard in 11th.
In the overall skimeister standings, Woods is the leader with 55 points. Telstar’s Liam Gallagher is second with 45 followed by Wheeler at 52. Mountain Valley’s Corbin Arsenault is fourth at 51.
In the girsl’s skimeister standings, Monmouth’s Bryant is the leader with 28 points. Fort Kent’s Rudy Martin is second with 38 followed by Telstar’s Gabi Stone with 71.