Alpine Title Win
NYSPHSAA Alpine State Title Awarded to Ellicottville Alpine Ski Team
By Anna Hagley
Once a year, several schools come together on one mountain to compete in the NYSPHSAA Skiing Championships. This two-day event ends with only one team receiving the honor of the state title, and this year, the Ellicottville Girls Alpine Ski Team came out on top. Not only did they win the title, but they did it being one team member short, leaving only twin 8th grade sisters to represent their team and participate.
This year’s event was held at Bristol Mountain Ski Resort, and has been held there and at White Face Mountain for more than a decade, in which over 125 athletes from various geographic sections of the state come together for a chance at the state title. In fact, there are 11 sections divided geographically in the state.
Ellicottville Central School has had an Alpine ski team for the past 5 years. Dennis Obrien, head of the Ski Racing Program for NYS, states that Mark Ward, Ellicottville Superintendent, has been a big proponent of supporting, and getting a ski team going. They are part of section six, the western-most athletic section of NYS. Within each geographic section there can be more than one team, and each team works toward a nomination to the state championships. It goes without saying that much skill is needed to make it to this event and represent their geographic area or section. Obrien explained to The Villager that 7th and 8th graders must test to be eligible for these varsity ski teams, and states that “it’s quite a deal for Ellicottville… it was quite an honor” to win the title.
Coach Kelly Fredrickson, who has coached the team since its start, spoke with the Villager. He explained that on their Alpine ski team there are eight members, and that typically three members compete at state, however only two of them were able to participate in this year’s state title championships. While it isn’t necessarily unlikely that 8th graders would qualify to be part of the ski team or compete in this, winning the title and being one team member short of the norm, is quite an accomplishment. When asked if they expected to win, Coach Fredrickson shared that it was definitely not something they expected, going into the event with less than three athletes. He was quite surprised and proud of his team.
Even more exciting to him, and what gives him true joy, is that these two team members happen to be his daughters, Hayly and Logan Fredrickson. The twin girls have been skiing since they were 5 years old, walking in the footsteps of Fredrickson, who has also been skiing since he was a child, and finds great enjoyment in being able to pass his knowledge on to his children.
In true Ellicottville fashion, the community is incredibly proud and supportive of the school as a whole and these athletes, as so many school districts, talented students and deserving athletes participate in the athletic competition each year. This display of not giving up, even when you may be “one man short,” is a true representation of sticking to your commitments, believing in yourself and harnessing your potential. The Villager Newspaper congratulates you for a job well done.