Waterski team grows membership

By Kari Myers and By Kari Myers

This year marks the first year the University waterski team has qualified for regionals.

After a temporary break, the team started back up in 2002. The team grows every year, and currently has about 25 members. Team members rely on their own connections to find places to practice.

“There’s always been a member of the team that has access to a private lake or public water with a boat,” Waterski Team President Ali Mollet said.

The team meets during the summer to prepare for the season ahead, which is considerably short compared to sports such as baseball, football and basketball. The practices begin when school starts, all the way up until it’s no longer warm enough outside.

The team competes in tournaments every weekend in September. During these tournaments, the team spends a lot of time with their competitors.

“This is very much a team sport. If you have one person that’s a rockstar, and the rest of their team isn’t very good, then that team isn’t going to go very far,”
Luke Nugent
Junior

“All the teams are good friends because we all get to see each other on the weekends and hang out, and usually other teams aren’t that close to their competition,” junior Trace Mollet said.

Some members, such as A. Mollet and sophomore Alyssa Rokita, have been water-skiing for most of their lives, and decided to come to the University strictly for the waterski team. Other members, such as freshman Casey Kronour and freshman Sam Kronour, have done little to no competitive waterskiing in their lives.

The only requirement to join the team is that you have to be able to swim.

“We prefer people who have at least tried it once and definitely can swim,” junior Kyle Artz said.

However, the requirements to compete are different.

“You can only have five guys and five girls compete for each event, so we just take whoever is the best [in a certain event]. You could be the best jumper and go the furthest, but be not so good at slalom [a type of skiiing], so you won’t compete in that one but be the top seat for the jump,” T. Mollet said.

A. Mollet said water-skiing is a team sport, as the men’s and women’s scores are combined.

“This is very much a team sport. If you have one person that’s a rockstar, and the rest of their team isn’t very good, then that team isn’t going to go very far,” junior Luke Nugent said.

The team doesn’t limit themselves to working only in the summer. During the winter they like to meet up and take snow skiing trips during the off-season to keep practicing even when there isn’t water around. They are even taking a trip to New York in February to go snowboarding and snow skiing.