Alpine skiers host MCSA Regional

The NMU club alpine ski team is kicking off the weekend with the MCSA regional meet.

The races take place at 10 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 15, and Sunday, Feb. 16 at Marquette Mountain.

NMU will face teams from the Midwest, including St. Olaf College, University of Minnesota, University of Michigan, Michigan State, University of Minnesota-Duluth, UW-Madison, Iowa State, Ohio State, Northwestern, Lacrosse, Minnesota State-Mankato and St. Cloud State.

Junior Danny Sutter said NMU has faced tough competition all year in preparation for this meet.

“Our team as a whole is doing great; we all get along and love each other like a family,” Sutter said. “We have great team chemistry, which is key to being successful when you don’t have a coach. We all help each other out. Our team is always giving each other pointers when we can.”

Without a coach, Sutter said it can be hard to conduct practices if people do not show up, because there are not enough people at practice, which can leave members unable to train.

Sutter also said the travel can be very stressful.

“We have to travel further than any other team to almost all of our races,” Sutter said. “Luckily, this week we are at home so that should help a lot.”

Junior Joey Vermeulen said there is a lot of dedication and hard work that goes into training.

Vermeulen said NMU works hard as a team and everyone has to cooperate and want to be successful in order to be competitive.

“I personally have had a very successful year, highlighted by two second and third place finishes, respectively,” Vermeulen said.

Last weekend, three athletes finished in the top 10 places in a race at Spirit Mountain.

In order for NMU to advance, the team must finish top three at regionals this weekend in a combination of the slalom and giant slalom races.

The women will also be competing this weekend. In every race this season, the women’s alpine ski team has finished in the top three.

The Wildcats defend home territory this weekend and have the opportunity to go to Nationals if the teams do well this weekend.