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Hopkinton boys’ Alpine pulls off second place in Division IV

Exceptional snow conditions at Loon Mountain led to an exceptional day of skiing at yesterday’s Division IV boys’ Alpine ski championships. The Hopkinton ski squad was in second after two giant slalom runs in the morning and held their runner-up spot with solid afternoon performances in the slalom to finish with 726 total points, second only to Derryfield’s 732. Lin-Wood (717), Profile (704), Gorham (674), Sunapee (664), Littleton (620), Newport (540), Woodsville (494) and Moultonborough (133) rounded out the ten team scores. The result was an improvement for both of the top two teams. Hopkinton improved from fourth-place, while Derryfield was seventh at last year’s state championships

“The boys did awesome, they exceeded my expectations,” Hawks’ Coach Dee Gilroy said. “Today they all peaked … and they worked as a team. Today was a very successful day.”

Hopkinton got off to a good start in the GS with James McCluskey finishing second with a time of one minute, 1.13 seconds, less than a second off the pace of the GS winner, Bailey Clermont of Lin-Wood. Colby Tawney (fourth GS) and Jake Hemmerlein (seventh GS) also posted top ten finishes, while Carmen Repucci (25th) also skied well. After the first half of the competition, Hopkinton trailed Derryfield by seven points for the lead.

The Hawks gained a point in the afternoon session, with Jake Hemmerlein posting the second-fastest time in the slalom (1:06.14) followed by McCluskey (fifth), Tawney (11th) and Repucci (36th). Hemmerlein’s time was .64 seconds behind the winner, Clermont of Lin-Wood.

McCluskey leads the skimeister competition (combination of Alpine and Nordic results) after posting the fastest GS and second-fastest slalom times of the five D-IV skiers in that event. McCluskey and Hemmerlein also qualifed for the Meet of Champions in both events thanks to top-10 finishes. Tawney qualified in the GS.

GIRLS’ ALPINE SKIING

Division I Championships

The Tide were in fourth after two morning ski runs, but took a couple of falls in the afternoon session to finish fifth at the Division I state championships at Mount Sunapee. D-I powerhouse Exeter won with 755 points while Pinkerton needed a tie-breaker (adding all scoring Giant slalom and slalom runs together) to hold off Bedford (698) for second. Keene (638) beat Concord (637.5) by half a point for fourth-place.

“We had a great start in the giant slalom,” said Concord Coach George Golden, “but even the best skiers in the world fall.”

Led by Jess Malfait (10th) and Rachel Stevenson (14th), the standings close enough after the GS portion of the meet for Concord to make a run for the top two with strong performances in the slalom. But Malfait, knowing that a top team finish was within reach, went for broke and took one too many chances, falling in her first run, which, Golden pointed out, was a huge setback.

“She knew she’d have to give it her all to give us a shot,” Golden said.

Jessie Bean (25th) and Annie Decosta-Klip (27th) also scored in the GS while Decosta-Klip (18th), Bean (20th), Emily Lafond (22nd) and Brooke Macri (36th) scored in the slalom.

“I think the girls might be disappointed since they won three of the five races they were in (during the regular season) and only lost to Exeter and Bedford. … But it was a good day, it was a great race. They all gave 100 percent and that’s what they had to do.”

BOYS’ BASKETBALL

Hopkinton 45, Newport 41

In a battle of one-loss teams, Hopkinton (12-1) avenged last season’s quarterfinal loss with a huge home win against Newport (12-2). The Hawks played well down the stretch and held the Tigers’ First Team All-State point guard Andrew Houde (averages 27 points a game) to nine points on 4-for-23 shooting thanks to an outstanding defensive effort.

Hopkinton held a slim 22-19 halftime lead, but trailed 34-28 with 52 seconds left in the third quarter. But three-consecutive jumpers from Gabe Nichols (scored six of his 16 points in the fourth quarter) tied the game with 1:40 left and then put them ahead, while Liam McNicholas (nine points) hit two clutch free throws to seal the win.

Jake Nelson (eight points, 10 rebounds) and Luke Luneau (seven points, 11 rebounds) controlled the boards while Brian Hauschild and McNicholas played great defense against Houde.

Pittsfield 71, Hinsdale 51

The Panthers (9-4) got off to a slow start, as Hinsdale (0-13) took a 12-0 lead to open the game, but Pittsfield turned things around to take a 10-point halftime lead in a win on the road. Kris Perkins (24 points) and Xenthios Cyr (15 points) led the offense while Casey Ward and Derek Pike played good defense.

GIRLS’ BASKETBALL

Hinsdale 52, Pittsfield 29

Hinsdale (14-0) took a 19-3 lead in the first quarter to put away the Panthers (7-7).

“They came out flying in the first quarter, that was pretty much the game,” Pittsfield Coach Steve Langevin said.

Gabby Bartlett and Brooke Vien scored nine points each and Rachel Thompson scored her first varsity basket.

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