Heather Farrington’s dreams of success as a high school skier were dealt a serious blow during her freshman season. The Mt. Blue senior suffered a serious injury in January of her first season and was stuck on the sidelines.

Farrington suffered a lateral tibia plateau fracture, a dislocated knee cap and a torn MCL during a race at Sunday River. A plate, four screws and a bone graph later, Farrington was skiing again as a sophomore.

She pushed through considerable pain her sophomore season and raced with mixed results. During the fall sports season her junior year, Farrington asked if the plate removed.

“The first time I raced, I was terrified of being in that much pain again,” Farrington said. “I felt like I would never get over the fact that I broke my leg.”

Her confidence returned during her junior year, but results were mixed.

“I was worried,” she said. “Then it came to a point where I had to just go for it, to find out if I could do it.”

As a senior, Farrington felt ready to compete. In the second race of the season, she picked up her first high school victory. She followed with a second a week later.

“After that first win, I really felt like I completed something,” Farrington said. “When I was a freshman, I set a goal of winning a race and it helped me gain confidence.”

Farrington took a big step in her quest to be one of the top high school skiers in Maine on Saturday when she won the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference slalom championship. Farrington edged Edward Little’s Allarie Lever with a two-run time of 1 minutes, 18.43 seconds. Lever finished in 1:18.51.

“That was really something special for Heather,” Mt. Blue coach Mark Cyr said. “To come back from the injury that she had, took a lot, and to win and have the team be successful too, was good for her.”

Farrington added: “I’m excited. I want us to win states and to continue to ski like I am.”

* * *

Ben Spencer of Litchfield helped the Kents Hill boys win their third Maine Association of Independent School Athletic Directors titles in four years, at Shawnee Peak.

Spencer, who is unbeaten in 10 races this season, blistered the slalom course in 1:21.28, nearly nine second faster than runner-up Nick Richardson, also of Kents Hill.

In the giant slalom, Spencer finished with a combined time of 51.06, beating teammate Chris McKee by 2.44 seconds.

Spencer won the MAISAD individual overall title for the third time, winning all seven of MAISAD races.

“Ben is an unbelievable ski racer,” Kents Hill coach Steve Bell said. “He does nothing but win ski races for us and has been sensational for four years.”

Abbie Bowie of Augusta also enjoyed a successful season at Kents Hill. A junior, Bowie won the giant slalom and slalom at the MAISAD championships.

Bowie was the only girls to break the one minute barrier in the giant slalom, posting a two run time of 59.12, while winning the slalom race in 1:38.33.

Kents Hill will compete in the New England Prep School Athletic Conference championships Wednesday.

* * *

The state championships will get underway Monday, Feb. 20, with the Class C classical race at Black Mountain in Rumford. On Tuesday, Class C host the giant slalom race at Mt. Abram in Greenwood and the freestyle event at Black Mountain, while Class B heads to Big Rock in Mars Hill for the giant slalom and to The Heritage Center in Presque Isle for the freestyle competition.

Class C wraps up its championship on Wednesday the slalom race at Mt. Abram. Class A opens its championship on Wednesday with the classical race at Black Mountain, while Class B runs its slalom championship at Big Rock.

Class B ends Thursday with the classical race at The Heritage Center. Class A runs giant slalom and freestyle Thursday at Black Mountain and ends with the slalom race on Friday, also at Black Mountain.

 


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