The Echo

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The Debut of the THS Ski Team

Though Tenafly has had a ski program in the past, this year brings an official competitive team that students can get excited about.

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The Debut of the THS Ski Team

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Emily Matteson (’19) speeds around gates.

With the winter sports season in full swing, students are excited to watch and play sports such as basketball and hockey. This year, however, a new sport has taken its place among the ranks of Tenafly High School’s winter sports: the ski team. While Tenafly has had a ski club, it never had an official racing team. This year, however, with the help of dedicated Tenafly athletics staff members and dedicated families, some of which, like that of Maddie Cho, Kendal  Gordon, and Jonathan Tenenbaum, train on Vermont race teams and academies, the monumental foundation was established beyond successfully.

Maddie has been racing since before the age of ten. Maddie said that she and her family “decided to help create the Tenafly Ski team because [they] wanted people from Tenafly High School to be able to experience the unique sport.”

Eli Josif (’21) rips down the course

Led by Mr. Toale and Jeff Dzwonkowski, the roster consists of eleven students so far. Mr. Toale is in charge of dry land training and conditioning, and Mr. Dzwonkowski is in charge of coaching the racing. Every week the team goes to Mount Peter in Warwick, New York to practice skiing, and meets are held at nearby Mountain Creek in Vernon Township, against teams such as Pingry, Blair, Bergen Catholic, Don Bosco, and more. The THS team competes in both the slalom and giant slalom (GS) events.

In it’s historic premiere, the Tenafly High School alpine race team has managed to send three racers, Jonathan, Maddie, and Kendal, to the New Jersey Race of Champions, the invitational state championship selecting around the top-ranked forty racers statewide to race among the most competitive athletes in New Jersey. The ability of Tenafly to send three racers in its debut in the New Jersey Interscholastic Ski Racing Association is remarkable, with teams with five or more years under their belt sending less competitors. Through

Jonathan Tenenbaum (’21) shreds in slalom

much hard work and speedy runs, Maddie Cho has even managed to qualify for the U.S. Eastern Championship, furthering Tenafly’s reputation as a promising school for ski racing.

To join the team, no racing prerequisite is required. However, one must know how to ski. Throughout the school, the general opinion on the ski team is positive. “It’s great that they are adding another sport,” said Natalie Ha (’20).

While the team is still small now, members and coaches are hoping it grows. “For the future, I really hope we can gain more members and progress as a team,” Gordon said.

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