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Hastings Nordic skiers take top two spots at MEC sprints

Just how dominant the Hastings Raiders have been this Metro East Conference boys Nordic skiing season was again shown last week. 

At a unique MEC sprint race last week, Hastings ended up with three of the top six skiers for the boys. Hastings had skiers place first, second and fifth.

And the girls? Well they did pretty well, too, taking the top two spots.

“It was really exciting,” coach John Dewall said. “It’s the most fun race I’ve seen in 30 years of coaching. Kids were racing full tilt.”

There were a series of 1K heats that narrowed the field down to, eventually, just six skiers.

For the boys, Will Caturia was the winner. Kyle Gudmunson was second and Bobby Verchota was fifth.

Garrett Tuin and Nick Johnson also raced and they advanced to the final 30 before being eliminated.

Trevor Caflisch didn’t advance to the final 30, so he raced in the junior varsity competition and placed second in that.

For the girls, Rachel Peterson was the overall winner. Her younger sister, Hannah, also advanced to the final six. She was in third place behind a strong skier from Tartan. At the finish line, though, Hannah Peterson snuck past the Tartan skier and placed second.

“Hannah came flying across the line, edging out this girl from Tartan,” Dewall said. “It was crazy.”

Abberly Smith and Allissa Smith also advanced to the top 30.

Cali Bernard placed sixth overall in the junior varsity race.