SSHS senior steals show, second title

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— Gunnar Sorensen has found a groove.

The Steamboat Springs senior notched his second title of the season, winning the boys division at the recent high school race in Winter Park.

"He had never won before in his life until last week," coach Chris Arnis said. "I think he's a lot more comfortable in these races. He is skiing amazingly well."

Sorensen led the way for the Sailor boys. The team scored 157 points, finishing three points behind host Middle Park at the Jan. 17 slalom race.

It was the boys' highest team finish of the year, Arnis said.

Sorensen's time of 1 minute, 25.23 seconds was more than 1 second faster than his closest competitor.

Jeff Allbright, Jeff Fowler and Christian Hogrefe comprise the rest of the team. Allbright finished in 31st with a 1:45.39, Fowler was immediately behind him in 32nd with a 1:45.47 and Hogrefe placed 58th with a 1:59.85.

The girls continued their successful season, winning the team title at the Winter Park slalom race on Jan. 17. The Sailor girls notched the same score as their male teammates -- 157 -- but the girls' score was three points better than second-place Battle Mountain.

Steamboat was led by Britney Lamb's sixth-place finish. She posted a final time of 1:40.75.

"Her finish was the best of the year for Steamboat's female racers," Arnis said.

Shannon Gormley was 11th with a 1:44.12. Henley Shepherd was 12th with a 1:45.31 and Piper Reed fell on her second run.

The winner on the girls' side was Vail Mountain School's Courtney Robinson. She finished with a time of 1:33.52.

Fourteen teams made up each gender's field in Winter Park, Arnis said, and he was pleased with the results posted by both the boys and girls teams.

The top 45 percent in each class qualify for the state race; Sorensen, Allbright, Fowler, Lamb, Gormley and Shepherd earned a trip with their results in Winter Park, Arnis said.

The Sailors' Alpine team returns to the slopes on Friday for a giant slalom race in Loveland. Clear Creek High School will host the race.

-- To reach Melinda Mawdsley call 871-4208 or e-mail mmawdsley@steamboatpilot.com

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