Waynflete Nordic Coach Ben Hamilton tells a story about Willson Moore, whose family has a camp on a lake in northern Ontario.

Moore thought a nearby island would be a great place to exercise, so he swam out and fashioned a pull-up bar. When vacation ended, his parents told him he needed to dismantle the bar.

Moore found a crowbar, tied it to his waist, and started swimming toward the island.

“He was having so much fun,” Hamilton said, “that he decided to swim around the island before taking down the bar. That is quintessential Willson Moore. He thrives on a challenge.”

A senior at Waynflete, Moore won the Class C classical and freestyle titles, dethroning his good friend, Tucker Pierce of Maine Coast Waldorf. A week later, in the Eastern high school championship selection races at Black Mountain, Moore posted the fastest classical time and placed second overall.

Moore is our choice for Maine Sunday Telegram Boys’ Skier of the Year.

“There are two defining features to Willson that make him a fine person and an incredible teammate,” Hamilton said. “One is his work ethic. If we ask him to run a dry-land practice and give him a target of six miles, he’s probably going to run nine. He just loves to work out. Two is his love of competition. He feeds off it, enjoys it, has this infectious enthusiasm on race day.”

Mt. Blue senior Tucker Barber also received strong consideration. Barber swept the Class A individual titles over the same Quarry Road Trails on the same days as Moore – Barber was faster in classical, Moore in freestyle – to go along with the Sassi Memorial classical title.

At the EHSC races last weekend in Vermont, Pierce finished 22nd in classical to Moore’s 23rd and Barber’s 32nd. In freestyle, Barber was 24th, Moore 28th and Pierce 30th.

“I knew there was going to be some really good competition this year,” Moore said. “My goal coming in was to really try and match some of those skiers and be competitive with them.”

Moore, who also runs cross country and track, grew up shuffling through the woods of Freeport on waxless skis with his dad and joined a Bill Koch program at Twin Brook in Cumberland. He was a baseball player through eighth grade and played soccer his freshman year at Freeport High, where he also earned all-state chorus honors.

After transferring to Waynflete, he competed in Science Olympiads and, with his team, advanced to the nationals in Nebraska. He plans to study physics and sustainable engineering at Middlebury, and hopes to compete with the Nordic team.

Throughout the winter, Pierce and Moore went back and forth in Western Maine Conference meets. Pierce won the WMC classical title and Moore won freestyle.

“On any given day at a WMC meet, it’s going to be Willson or Tucker,” Hamilton said. “You would think that competition would create a wedge, a divide, but the opposite has happened. They’re the best of friends.”

ALL-STATE-TEAM

Tucker Barber, Mt. Blue senior: A two-time Class A classical champ, he also won the freestyle title and led the Cougars to a second straight Nordic title. The Sassi Memorial champ placed 24th (skate) and 32nd (classic) at the Eastern high school championships in Vermont.

Nathan Delmar, Maranacook senior: The Class B slalom champion, and runner-up in giant slalom, he was Maine’s top slalom finisher at the Eastern championships in 23rd place. He plans to attend Bates and continue skiing at a club level.

Zach Holman, Maranacook senior: The Class B Nordic classical champion by 44 seconds and runner-up in freestyle, he helped the Black Bears win their second state title in three years. He was fourth in a field of 149 at the Sassi Memorial.

John Lane, Yarmouth senior: The Class B Nordic freestyle champion by nine seconds who also placed fifth in classical, Lane finished third of 149 skiers in the Sassi Memorial.

Devon Lathrop, Cape Elizabeth sophomore: The Class A giant slalom champion for the second straight year and the runner-up in slalom by .37 seconds, he was also the WMC champ in both disciplines.

Axel Lindsay, Greely senior: The Class A slalom state champion, Lindsay placed third in slalom by less than a second. He placed 27th in giant slalom and 31st in slalom at the Eastern championships.

Willson Moore, Waynflete senior: Moore swept the classical and freestyle races in Class C, and was the WMC freestyle champion and classic runner-up. He placed 23rd in classic and 28th in freestyle at the Eastern championships.

Nick Newman, Mountain Valley senior: The Class B giant slalom champion – by a five-second margin – and runner-up in slalom, he placed 20th in giant slalom and 32nd in slalom at the Eastern championships.

Tucker Pierce, Maine Coast Waldorf senior: Despite illness at the Class C state meet, he finished second in freestyle and third in classical. He was 20th overall at the Eastern championships among a field of 109 in the three-event (freestyle, classic, sprint) competition.

Gibson Scott, Falmouth sophomore: Scott was runner-up in Class A giant slalom and third in slalom while skiing conservatively to help Falmouth earn the Alpine team title.

COACH OF THE YEAR

Tip Kimball, Falmouth Alpine: After placing second in the Western Maine Conference, Falmouth put it all together at the state meet to win the Class A Alpine crown for the first time since 2013. After building up a sizable lead in giant slalom, Falmouth did even better in slalom to win by 64 points over runner-up Cape Elizabeth. “We have a very young team and I considered them a long shot,” said Kimball. “All the stars had to align perfectly to make this happen with them, and they did.”

Glenn Jordan can be contacted at 791-6425 or:

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