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February 27, 2013

ME's Jones finishes third at state ski race

Megan Jones capped off her senior ski season in a big way on Tuesday at the State Ski Championships at Berkshire East Ski Center in Charlemont.

The Hornets senior had one of her best runs of the season on Tuesday turning in a third place performance in the giant slalom out of nearly 150 competitors to help the Hornets girls to a seventh place finish in a field of nearly 50 schools.

“She is an exceptional student athlete, one of the most driven kids I’ve met,” head coach Tim Wonson said of Jones. “She has steel focus in a sport that is usually decided by hundredths of a second. Without much room for error she makes it work race after race.”

Jones’ third place finish on Tuesday is a fitting end to a season in which she won six out of seven North Shore Ski League races finishing second in the other. She also took home her second straight Interscholastic Ski Race championship which took place in the week leading up to Tuesday’s state race.

Jones and the Hornets were not only working against the stacked field of the best high school ski racers in the state, they were also working against an extremely difficult race course. The course at Berkshire East is double the size of the course at Manchester Essex’s home mountain Ski Bradford. Berkshire East’s course is not only longer, it’s also more windy when it comes to the giant slalom.

“The giant slalom was really tricky for the kids,” Wonson said. “It had a lot of turns, then it opens up in the middle allowing you to pick up some good speed and the bottom third is really steep. That’s what makes some of our times so impressive. They are used to running the giant slalom in around 20 seconds and today a lot of the times were around 40 seconds. It was a tough adjustment but everyone did a great job.”

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