Maranacook senior Abby Mace opened the season where she left off last year, dominating a pair of opening Nordic races last week. Mace won the 4k freestyle race at Titcomb Mountain on Wednesday, then finished first in the 5k classical at the Leavitt Hornet Classic at Black Mountain.

Mace won each race by more than 40 seconds over her nearest competitor.

“Abby has looked real good this early in the season,” Maranacook Nordic coach Steve DeAngelis said. “Our girls did quite well the first week and our boys are fairly decent.”

Once again, the Black Bears have put a formidable Nordic team together, not only in quality but in numbers with 35 skiers. An exceptionally strong middle school Nordic program will boost the totals again over the next couple of seasons.

“We have good coaching and good kids at the middle school level,” DeAngelis said. “We have a really super young team at the high school level and a lot of good kids coming along.”

DeAngelis noted that it was difficult to evaluate the team over the past week because of a lack of snow in Readfield. The Black Bears have competed in two area Nordic meets, giving the veteran coach a brief look a what he can expect this season.

“We have been skiing in a field, there is no snow in the woods or on our trails,” DeAngelis said. “Saturday was our first classical race of the year, so it is hard to know what to expect until we get some time on snow.”

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An outstanding effort by volunteers at Titcomb Mountain in Farmington has enabled the Mt. Blue Alpine team to host a pair of slalom races. The Cougars faired well.

CVA transfer and Mt. Blue senior Lucas Bonnevie has skied well early in the season, winning both of the opening slalom races. In Bonnevie’s inaugural race for Mt. Blue, he torched the course with a two-run combined time of 1:10.51, just over four seconds faster than second-place finisher Alec Daigle of Maranacook, who posted a 1:14.76.

In his second race, on Titcomb’s Otter Slide, Bonnevie finished in 1:11.77, nearly nine seconds faster than teammate North Kay, who finished second at 1:20.07.

“Lucas is an excellent skier,” Mt. Blue coach Mark Cyr said. “We are lucky to have someone with that much talent join our team, he is a good addition.”

For the Mt. Blue girls Alpine team, senior Heather Farrington skied to her first high school win last Wednesday at Titcomb, finish the slalom race in 1:20.18.

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Dylan Thombs set the pace for the first-year Monmouth Academy Nordic team, finished ninth at the Leavitt Hornet Classic.

Thombs toured the 5k classical course in 15:29.0. Cam Regan of North Yarmouth Academy, the premier classical high school ski racer in Maine, won the race in 14:13.5.

Also on the team for Monmouth, which finished 14th out of 24 teams, are Matt Bryant, Sherman Spears, Ben Bailey and Brian Nugent.

Monmouth also features a first-year girls Nordic program and finished 19th place in the Leavitt race. Becki Bryant, Jordyn Mann, Kim Lewis and India Pickett skied for the Mustangs in the race. The team is being coached by Chris Bryant.

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