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  • Delaney Pratt of the Nederland ski team finished ninth in...

    photo supplied / BoCoPreps.com

    Delaney Pratt of the Nederland ski team finished ninth in the slalom in 2017.

  • Nederland's Talus Lantz finished 17th in the slalom last season.

    photo supplied / BoCoPreps.com

    Nederland's Talus Lantz finished 17th in the slalom last season.

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In his second year as the head coach of Nederland’s alpine skiing team, Jonathan Damon believes his squad has what it takes to improve on their state finishes from last season, both on the boys and girls side.

The Panthers’ top returning skier on the girls’ team is senior Delaney Pratt, who was second-team all-state in the slalom and finished ninth in the event at the state championships last February. Pratt also finished 17th in giant slalom. Overall, the Panthers finished 10th.

On the boys side, Nederland’s top returners are senior Charles Ghayur, who finished 16th in the giant slalom at the state championships, and junior Talus Lantz, who finished 17th in the slalom. The Panthers boys squad finished eighth overall.

“We need to improve on our squad depth and the consistency of our racers,” Damon said.

Newcomers to the team that Damon is excited about are Lars Luscher and Gavin Burke on the boys’ team, and Emily Creek and Jacey Dawson on the girls’ team.

The Panthers’ facilities got an upgrade in the offseason, as Eldora Mountain Resort unveiled a new lift in November.

“We love Eldora’s new high-speed chairlift,” said Damon.

After a giant slalom scrimmage in Loveland on Dec. 16, the Panthers will have three slalom races and three giant slalom races, beginning with a giant slalom race Jan. 5, 2018 at Ski Cooper in Leadville. The state championships will take place Feb. 22-23, 2018, also at Ski Cooper.

Christoph Ludwig: 303-473-1313, cludwig@prairiemountainmedia.com

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