Girls winner Mt. Blue’s Taylor Gordon rounds a gate during her second run at the KVAC Alpine ski championships at Titcomb. Sun Journal photo by Brewster Burns

Talk about bursting onto the scene.

Mt. Blue freshman Taylor Gordon had as impressive a debut season as an Alpine skier could have, taking home  Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference slalom and giant slalom titles, and winning an individual title in the slalom at the Class A championships, helping nail down the team title for the Cougars.

For her success on the slopes, Gordon is the Central Maine Girls Alpine Skier of the Year.

Mt. Blue Alpine coach Mark Cyr was aware of Gordon’s talents while she was in middle school, but he wasn’t sure she’d be skiing for Mt. Blue when she entered the high school ranks.

“There was a long period of time last year and all the way through the summer where, I don’t think it was until August where I knew she was going to be going to Mt. Blue,” Cyr said. “There was talk about her maybe going to (Carrabasset Valley Academy) or Gould Academy or some other academy. I don’t think it was until just before school started — I think I was coaching the golf team, and one of my skiers is on the golf team — she goes ‘(Taylor) is going to Mt. Blue, you know.’ And I said, ‘Wow,’ because I didn’t know and wasn’t sure. When I got that news, I was thrilled.”

Gordon started winning races right out of the gate, but really shined at the KVAC championships, sweeping the slalom and giant slalom titles. In the slalom, she finished with a combined time of 1:21.46, which bested Liz Dieterich (1:21.59) of Oxford Hills by less than a second.

Gordon posted a time of 1:47.85 to win the giant slalom, more than four seconds faster than second-place finisher Anna Baldwin of Hampden Academy (1:52.05).

Gordon said that was when her confidence picked up.

“I started to feel pretty good heading into KVACs,” Gordon said. “But I just kept hearing there would be more (skiers) that I’d be going against (at states). Once I made it to states I started to feel a lot more confident.”

Taylor won the slalom title in similar fashion at the Class A meet at Shawnee Peak in Bridgton, finishing with a combined time of 1:41.27, just edging Baldwin (1:41.62) for the crown. Taylor also finished fifth overall in the giant slalom (1:27.69).

“I was pretty nervous, it was my first (state meet) so I didn’t really know what to expect,” Gordon said. “By the end of the second day, my nerves were pretty well gone.”

Gordon said she was proud of her ability to focus.

“I try to stay focused as much as I can and just try to work hard all season,” Gordon said. “By the end of the year, it’s kind of tiring, but just trying to stay focused on the big races at the end of the year.”

“She has amazing technique, both in GS and slalom,” Cyr added. “Her tactics and her technique are just amazing. She’s turning at the right time, she’s releasing her ski at the right time and getting ready for the next turn. Those tactics are amazing. Just her body position when she turns is very balanced, very solid.”

With three years remaining in her high school career, there is still room for Gordon to grow. Cyr said he hopes to see Gordon be a little more aggressive on her first run going forward.

“Her first run, she may have finished fourth or fifth or sixth or something like that,” Cyr said. “Then she’d have to put the peddle to the metal on the second run in order to win the race. She did it, obviously a lot… I hope she gets out of that trend, but we’ll see.”

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