Junior Trevor Caflisch and sophomore Linnea Urban will represent Hastings at the state nordic ski meet in Biwabik, Minn., after winning Metro East Conference championships and each taking second at the Section 1 race on Tuesday, Feb. 5.
It will be Caflisch's second-straight trip to the state meet after he finished 133rd last winter in a race where he was still recovering from the flu and broke a pole early on in the race. It will Urban's first state meet as she has followed up an incredible cross-country season with an even more successful nordic one.
"Going into the section meet, we wanted to get our athletes, as many as we could, to state. We certainly saw that Trevor and Linnea could put it together," Dewall said. "It goes from a pretty weak conference in reality to a pretty salty section, you never see those people throughout the year. I knew Trevor and Linnea were on top of their game and unless a disaster happened I was very certain that they would qualify for state."
Urban took second with a time of 36 minutes, 58 seconds, less than 20 seconds behind the section champion.
"Linnea, in the girls' race, she was one second behind last year's section champion who was an older girl who is one of the top midwest skiers," Dewall said. "So when she came out of the classic a second behind her that was absolutely incredible and then went into the skate race and held her own."
Even though Dewall said he knew Urban would qualify, he said that she was a surprise to everyone else.
"Linnea hadn't even been mentioned in the previews and to come out like that and just absolutely smoke the competition was pretty awesome," he said.
Caflisch took second with a time of 30 minutes, 38 seconds, just 28 seconds behind the section champion.
"Trevor, he worked on his classic pretty much all summer with his summer training program and it certainly showed throughout the year," Dewall said. "He literally picked up from last year a minute plus on some of those same athletes that he had been racing last year."
"It was really cool to have two section runners-up at that level," Dewall said. "Hats off to both of them for following from last season to a summer training program and continuing on, following the workouts and obviously it shows. And we're looking forward to great state meets from both of them."
The Hastings girls took eighth with 272 points. After Urban came Emma and Abby Bratvold in 39th and 40th with times of 46:55 and 46:57 respectively. Caturia took 51st with a time of 53:18, Alex Doughty finished 54th in 55:35, Atkins placed 56th (57:34) and Lawson was 60th with a time of 1:07:30.
The Raider boys finished sixth and were just three points out of fifth. Behind Caflisch came Ben Bratvold in 35th with a time of 37:13 and right behind him in 36th was Stoltz in 37:15. Rabaey took 41st with a time of 39:17, Siebenaler finished 44th in 40:07, Sanchez placed 54th (48:18) and Trost was 56th in 1:03:03.
Both the Raider boys' and girls' teams took second at the MEC conference championship meet. The boys finished with 447 points, 25 behind champion Henry Sibley. The girls scored a 453, 12 behind first-place Mahtomedi. Caflisch and Urban both took home individual conference championships.
"The conference meet went really good," Dewall said. "Linnea ended up winning the conference meet, she had a solid classic race and then followed it up with a solid skate race."
"Trevor won the conference title and had a phenomenal day," he said. "He's been skiing on top of the Metro East all year, pretty much undefeated throughout the year."
For the girls, sophomore Emma Bratvold took second, eighth-grader Abigail Bratvold fourth, fellow eighth-grader Molly Caturia finished 22nd and senior Alex Doughty placed 29th. Seventh-grader Elise Atkins took 33rd, seventh-grader Eve Lawson finished 41st and fellow seventh-grader Jordan Doughty placed 44th. Junior Kiera Maher took 46th.
On the boys' side, senior Ben Bratvold took eighth, sophomore Kyle Stoltz finished 12th and sophomore Sam Rabaey placed 16th. Freshman Tommy Siebenaler took 21st, sophomore Gabe Sanchez finished 41st and seventh-grader Josiah Trost placed 45th.
"With the minimal snow this year, they were able to get out to Hyland (Lake Park Reserve) on the man-made (snow) lots and lots of days and it definitely paid off," Dewall said. "They all had really good races."