Soldotna skiers dominate Homer Invite; Mariners ski Government Peak this week

This weekend’s weather brought the Homer Nordic Ski Invitational to an abrupt finish when the rain forced coaches to cancel the second day. Though Friday went smoothly, Saturday’s conditions could not be salvaged for a day of racing.

Friday’s weather was unexpectedly excellent, wrote assistant coach Alison O’Hara in an email.

“The rain was supposed to pour and the wind was to howl. Instead, the sun shined for the entire race and the groomers whipped what snow we have into perfect conditions. The Homer Mariners got eight of their own on the podium which was the icing on the cake,” O’Hara said.

Soldotna, Kenai, Nikiski, Seward and, of course, Homer came out Friday to compete in 5-km races down the Ohlson Mountain Lookout Trails.

Soldotna High School’s skiers dominated both the men’s junior varsity and varsity classes. Skiers Levi Michael, John-Mark Pothast and Koby Vinson took first through third places in the men’s varsity race. Junior varsity player Joseph Dmmmeyer took first place for SoHi’s men’s junior varsity as well. 

For Homer’s men, junior varsity shined with Josh Wisner placing third in his class. Wisner was followed up by teammates Seamus Scholz and Ben Kettle in sixth and seventh places, and Andy Super in eleventh.

Men’s varsity saw sixth, seventh, ninth and eighteenth rankings from skiers Jacob Davis, Caleb Rouch, Tadhg Scholz and Eric Super, respectively.

Kenai took first and second place in the women’s varsity race with skiers Addison Gibson and Riana Boonstra, as well as second and third in the women’s junior varsity with Oliva Brewer and Mackenzie Lindeman. SoHi showed up again in third in women’s varsity with Hannah Pothast. Seward, however, took their only first place spot in the women’s junior varsity race thanks to Sadie Lindquist.

Women’s junior varsity only had one skier, Ellie Seth, who placed 11th in her class. Sarah Wolf and Rachel Ellert placed fifth and sixth, followed by teammate Mariah Vantrease in 11th, in the women’s varsity race.

As the schedule for the season is set, there will not be an opportunity for Homer to hold the second day of the invitational on another date, said athletic director Chris Perk. Homer’s Nordic ski team heads up to Government Peak for races on Friday and Saturday.

Anna Frost can be reached at