On February 27, senior Stella Alphas concluded her unprecedented skiing career by finishing first at the MIAA Mass Alpine Championships and winning the Slalom race. A League Girl Champion for four years, Alphas concluded an excellent last season placing first in all six races and winning 14 out of 24 league races overall.
“Stella is an amazing athlete. She is a ferocious competitor but a humble individual,” head coach Kevin Rowe said. “She is a great athlete who is confident, yet modest.”
Going into the State Championships, Alphas recounted feeling both nervous and excited about the big race.
“I was definitely very nervous,” Alphas described. “Every year there is a big race, but I was super excited this year because we finally had three girls [competing]. If you have three kids on a team, then you can qualify as a legitimate team.”
Along with Alphas’ leadership and strong individual results, performances from sophomore Kenna McCaughey and freshman Samantha Burns also led the WHS girls ski team finished second in the Slalom race and third in the State Championship.
Rowe commented on the girls’ performance at the state race and how impressed he was at the team’s success.
“As I watched each girl race the course, I felt confident that they all skied well enough to finish in the top five. I had no idea that they had performed well enough to capture second place in the Slalom. It was thrilling for all of us,” he said.
Along with Alphas’ athletic abilities, her encouraging and friendly attitude has helped the other skiers on the team. Rowe highlighted Alphas’ role as a team captain alongside junior Spencer Nixdorff.
“I truly credit my two captains Stella Alphas and Spencer Nixdorff. They worked hard to keep the team motivated and having fun,” Rowe said. “It’s a true pleasure to have captains who can handle the needs of the team and still compete at a high level.”
Additionally, students have benefited greatly from Alphas’ supportive nature and strong leadership. McCaughey described how Alphas has helped her personally throughout the season.
“She is kind hearted, supportive of her teammates, hardworking, and a great friend to all,” McCaughey said. “The kindness and support she has given me has always been something I’ve been extremely grateful for.”
For Rowe, he only feels excitement for Alphas’ future as she graduates from the high school.
“I’m excited for her,” Rowe said. “She trained hard the last two years and had a goal to win the State Slalom and possibly the Giant Slalom. It’s was a thrill for us to help her reach these goals.”