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Ashwaubenon Edges Iola for third at Nordic state

By Cathy Putman
Special to The Press Times

CABLE – After two days of racing in zero degree temperatures Feb. 12-13, the Ashwaubenon Nordic Ski Team boys edged rival Iola by a point to claim third in the team competition at the State Nordic Championships in Cable.

The last interscholastic competition of the season required focused skiing by the top three skiers – Grant Rocheleau (Bay Port), Joe Stumpf (Notre Dame Academy) and Noah Jahnke (West De Pere).

Rocheleau thrilled with a career-best third overall in the classic leg Saturday, which put him only 39 seconds in deficit at the pursuit start Sunday.

Stumpf notched 10th, and Jahnke was 19th.

All three improved their classic times over 2021 state but were out of contention for team recognition.

“On Saturday, when we saw how close we were to that podium spot, we knew we had to pass as many people as we could Sunday to make up points and get us ahead,” Rocheleau said. “I’m thankful for my teammates coming through.”

Stumpf dug deep Sunday, skiing the fifth-fastest skate leg to finish in sixth overall, a notable jump from his 14th at state last year.

Jahnke’s skate leg was 30 seconds slower than Stumpf’s, and he moved up four spots to 15th, improving on his 39th in 2021.

Lightning did not strike twice for Rocheleau – he dropped to ninth overall, but still had bragging rights with a top-ten finish.

Placing 23rd, Ben Buchmann (Ashwaubenon) had the third-highest finish for a freshman with an impressive skate leg.

Jon Hanson (Pulaski) was 38th in the field of 130, benefiting from good classic racing.

For the high school girls, senior Greta Hansen (Green Bay Southwest) had a stunning second in the classic race.

Based on her Sunday effort in the skate, she finished fourth overall.

Freshman Lauren Carlton (Ashwaubenon) finished 18th.

In their first state distance competition, Lilly Franzen (Green Bay Southwest) and Paige Beining (Notre Dame) completed the pursuit race less than a minute apart, placing in the middle of the field of 120 skiers.

Also participating were Ashwaubenon’s Viggo Sorbo, Owen Wick, Alex Bogenschutz and Keegan Herzog for the boys.

Notre Dame’s Brenedyn Barajas and Grace Del Frate also skied.

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