The Mount Greylock boys and girls Nordic teams took home state championships last season when snow was scarce. Just think what the teams can do with a normal snowfall.
"Last year was a struggle to stay focused and positive," girls’ coach Hilary Greene said. "There is only so much dry-land training you can do.
"This year we’re excited. The farmers’ almanac says it’s going to be a snowy winter."
The girls’ team lost its top two skiers in Laura Nolan and Mackenzie Hitchcock -- who are both skiing for Colby College this season -- but is still expecting to contend for another MIAA state title.
Kat Chenail is expected to take on the roll as the team’s top skier.
"Kat worked really hard in terms of ski-specific training over the summer," Greene said. "She had a really great fall cross country season, and I fully expect that she is going to set herself apart and put herself up in the top skiers of our league."
While Chenail hopes to be one of the leaders of the pack, the Mounties will also feature a strong supporting cast this season.
Stephanie Adamczyk, Sophia Dastoli, Alexa Adams, Chloe Anderson and Alexandra DeVeaux figure to be important members for the team.
"Through the first two weeks of practice our girls are looking very fit," Greene said. "They are all very motivated and all working very hard."
There will be no shortage of new names for the boys’ team this season.
Will Kirby is the team’s top returner and will look to build off a solid cross country season. He finished 11th overall in the state last season. Alex White was the 18th-best skier in the state and will also return for his senior season.
The Mounties lost Josh Harrington, Luke Costley, Aaron Taylor and Warren Taylor who all had top-10 finishes at the state championships a year ago.
Joining Kirby and White as seniors on the team are Sean Houston and Jonah Majumder. Juniors Caleb Raymond and Derek Wood will also be competing for top spots on the team as will sophomores Carter Stripp, Will Nolan, Jake Foehl and Jake Kobrin. Freshman Tommy Kirby will also be hoping to make an impact this season.
Stripp was a top runner on the cross country team this fall and will look to continue that success. Nolan, Kobrin and Tommy Kirby also had success running the trails this year.
Houston, Majumder, White and Foehl were all key members of the soccer team.
The lack of snow last season did not have an impact on the amount of student-athletes that came out for nordic this season.
"We do have 44 people on our team this season, which I think is kind of exciting for Nordic skiing to have that," Greene said. "We have averaged 35 to 40 kids a year, but I was a bit nervous this year. There is a different kind of energy when you are doing dry-land training all the time, I was a little worried we might drop a few, but they all stayed with it."