By Erin Kenyon, Staff Writer

UMF Ski Team Captain Bill Asbell (Photo Courtesy of Gia Pilgrim)

UMF Ski Team Captain Bill Asbell (Photo Courtesy of Gia Pilgrim)

As the UMF Ski Team continues its winter season, both Coach Scott Hoisington and captain William Asbell feel confident about the performance of the team with a record of four and two for the Men’s Alpine team.

For the start of the season back in September, Hoisington said, “we started off really slow, but the training camp at Christmas got us going.” Despite this slow start, Asbell is having a successful season. “This is definitely the most fun season I have had yet,” he said. “There is a lot of pride on the team this year.” The team includes nine boys and one girl on Alpine, as well as five girls and three boys on Nordic, consisting of five seniors, four juniors, four sophomores, and five freshman.  With training three times a week and racing twice a week Asbell said, “it has been really amazing to see the whole team improve throughout the season because of Scott’s coaching skills.” Similarly, Hoisington said, “I am very happy with the growth of the athletes as the year has progressed.”

“We have a really good chance of making regionals, because we only need one more race two win and we have three races left,” said Asbell. There will be some key UMF racers to watch.”

“We have three guys scoring for us in the third spot consistently, Alex Stevens, Bill Asbell, and Sebastian Dumont,” said Hoisington. “Lindsey Jacques has skied well as the only girl on the Alpine team.” As for the Nordic team, Hoisington noted that “Bryce Neal is the top men’s cross country skier and Emily Ramsey has won all the races for the women’s cross country ski team.”

Orono is the team’s biggest competition. “During the regular season, every race matters, because if we don’t win a certain number we can’t make it to the regional championships,” said Asbell. “[We] have been increasingly competitive [with Orono] throughout the season because of how close we are in skiing ability.”  With big races the skill of the racers might not be the only thing they need to win. “With skiing, it can sometimes be a big mental game, even though our team has great skiers,” said Asbell. As captain, Asbell must keep spirits high. “I always try to improve the confidence of my teammates. I like to think my role as being a leader/role model/morale booster for the team,” he said.

Hoisington is hopeful about this ski season. “If we can finish strong, we have an outside chance of qualifying for Nationals. Alex Rose, Sam, Lindsey and Emily all have a shot of making it as individuals,” said Hoisington. To this, Asbell said, “Confidence is key.”