Douglas skiers shine in races
Douglas High alpine ski racers Danner Hillman and Sean Dunkelman only got better as the day went on Wednesday.
Hillman and Dunkelman began well enough in the morning when they placed fourth and fifth respectively during a Tahoe Basin Ski League giant slalom race at Alpine Meadows, then moved up to second and third in the second half of a double header held as a makeup on the league’s regular season schedule.
Hillman clocked an overall time of 1 minute, 1.96 seconds to capture second-place in the day’s second giant slalom race, while Dunkelman placed third in 1:02.07. Both were right behind the winner — Incline’s Winston Pretti (1:01.20), and Dunkelman stood second after the first run, only three-hundredths behind Pretti in the lead. Hillman, a senior, has logged top-five finishes in his last five races.
It was also a big day for the Douglas boys team, as the Tigers took third-place and first-place in the respective races. The Douglas girls finished fifth in both races.
“Great day for the Douglas Ski Team at Alpine Meadows ski resort,” coach Shannon Elmquist wrote in an email.
Sloane Niccoli placed 12th in the second race, only three seconds out of the lead (1:04.11), and Bryan Harris was close behind in 15th (1:04.55). Luke Walters also finished 21st for the Tigers.
In the first race, Hillman (1:04.23) and Dunkelman (1:04.56) were fourth and fifth, while Niccoli placed 12th, Harris 19th and Walters 20th.
Emily Hillman was the top finisher for the Douglas girls in the second race, where she took 21st, while Mary Weyland finished 25th and Ariana Bilderback 29th. Hillman and Weiland were 20th and 21st, while Kat Wulstein took 27th in the other race.
Hillman placed second on Monday during a league race at Diamond Peak. Hillman was timed in 1:01.44, just over a second behind Incline’s Pretti. Whittell’s Payton Norton was a close third in 1:01.53.
Also for Douglas, Niccoli placed 18th in the boys race, Angelo Kaehler placed 22nd, Carson Shaw placed 24th and Blake Harper 30th.
Weyland placed 15th, Bilderback 20th, Dana Merriam placed 26th, Emily Hillman 27th and Madeline Annett 28th to lead the Douglas girls.
Incline’s Belle Johnson won the race in 1:03.23. Johnson was the Tahoe Basin Ski League combined co-champion and slalom champion in 2016.