On his two-hour-long ride back after a close run, freshman Ethan Hockridge was ecstatic.

And, according to Hockridge, coach Jason Kreps “was smiling bigger than I’ve ever seen him smile before.”

The cause of elation: the Cavs’ history-making day.

For the first time ever, the men’s ski team placed first in their division after the Feb. 26 slalom race at Boreal.

Here are the final rankings in the All-League Men’s Ski.

Freshman Luca Procida placed first.

Hockridge placed fourth, and junior Daniel Hernried placed fifth.

“It was a great feeling to win both for myself and the team,” Procida said. “I was really proud for everybody for all of the hard work we put in this season.

“We all spent so much time doing dryland, and when we had time on the mountain, things turned out to be great.”

According to Hernried, the runs were icy, making it hard to race.

“There were chunks of ice on the course,” Hernried said.

The chunks also affected Hockridge.

“He was flying all over the run because he is really aggressive,” Hernried said.

Hockridge said that he did not do his best.

“My runs didn’t feel all that great,” Hockridge said.  “I made a large mistake on the first run. But I managed to save it.

“My second run was slow but clean. I knew I just had to finish in the top three in order to clinch the title for the team.”

And he did just that.

Hockridge’s third-place finish was only one-hundredth of a second after Procida.

Ben Traverse, from Chico High School, is Procida’s main rival and second in the league. 

Now Hockridge and the rest of the team are “ready to bring all they’ve got to states.”

The state competition is from Sunday, March 5 – Tuesday, March 8.

—By Chardonnay Needler and Jack Christian

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