A bit later than planned, the Class B and C skiing state championships got under way Monday afternoon in Presque Isle.

Kaelyn Woods of Gray-New Gloucester and Samantha Pierce of Merriconeag defended their classical individual titles in B and C, respectively.

“I think it was the coldest weather I’ve raced in all year,” said Woods, who completed the 5-kilometer course at the Nordic Heritage Center in 17 minutes, 43 seconds – more than a minute faster than any of 119 other girls in both classes. “In the woods it wasn’t too bad, but in a few of the more exposed parts the wind had blown so much that there wasn’t really a track anymore.”

Pierce led the 58 Class C skiers with a time of 18:29.

For boys, Ethan Harriman of Maranacook and Forrest McCurdy of Merriconeag each won his first individual state title. Harriman won Class B in 15:29 to top a field of 59. McCurdy won Class C in 15:50 in a field of 66.

In team competition, Yarmouth’s girls and Maranacook’s boys lead in Class B, while Merriconeag is dominant in Class C.

With McCurdy and Tucker Pierce going 1-2, Merriconeag’s boys hold a 28-point lead on Fort Kent (17-45), with Orono third at 59.

Samantha Pierce and Fiona Ahearne also went 1-2 for Merriconeag’s girls, who hold a 15-54 lead over Orono. Waynflete is third at 62, Telstar fourth at 71 and Fort Kent fifth at 81.

Five Yarmouth girls finished in the top 10, led by Grace Cowles (fourth) and Emma Torres (fifth), and the Clippers have a 24-37 advantage over Freeport. Maranacook and Caribou are tied for third at 70. Kents Hill is fifth at 72.

Maranacook’s boys lead Freeport 29-39. Caribou (40) is third, followed by Yarmouth (61), Presque Isle (76) and Cape Elizabeth (110).

High winds and bitterly cold temperatures forced the postponement of the morning’s Alpine schedule of slalom races at Bigrock Ski Area in nearby Mars Hill. Now, instead of two runs each in slalom Monday and two in giant slalom Tuesday, skiers are allowed one run of giant slalom Tuesday morning and one run of slalom early Tuesday afternoon. That pushes the concluding Nordic freestyle race back an hour, to a 5:30 p.m. start for the girls. The sun sets in Presque Isle at 5.

“We’re racing under the lights,” Woods said. “That’ll be different.”