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Lily Horne-State Champion Spotlight

We next spotlight senior Lily Horne of Freeport.  She was the Class B classical state champion.  We asked her about her state meet and her favorite lilything about Nordic skiing.

1) What were your preparations leading up to the state meet?

As always, I tried to stay healthy, think positively, and focus on my training. 

 2) How did you deal with the pressure and emotions that come along with racing in a state meet? 

The only way I made it through the state meet was by thinking about my teammates. The day before states, Allison Greuel came down with a pretty bad cold. Seeing how hard she pushed herself through that pain was truly inspiring. I was racing for her, for our other teammates, for our coaches, and for the wonderful Freeport Nordic community that has given me so much. It’s not as hard to deal with nerves and pressure when you’re racing for something bigger than yourself. 

 3) What was going through your mind at the starting gate in the pursuit knowing that you could win?


Mostly it was just nice that my start time was easy to remember. Eliza, Maddie, and Allison are all super strong skiers, so I knew that winning the skate title would be hard. At the start line, as always, I was talking with the girls starting around me. It was my last race with many of them, so I was just soaking that in and enjoying their company. 

 4) You won the classical, what makes you so good and what do you attribute your success to?

There was a time when I liked classic and skate equally but that time is now a distant memory: classic is my favorite thing ever. As for my success in classic, I attribute that to a lot of time spent double poling. The other obvious factor is that classic is much closer to running than skate is, and I do quite a bit of running. 

5) As a senior, what are your goals for next year?

I’m still waiting to hear back from colleges, so I don’t know where I’ll be going, but I do know that running and skiing will always be a part of my life! 

6) What surprised you the most about this season?

I started out with very high hopes for the season. This was derailed in early January when I had a bunch of bad races and some illness. I felt pretty discouraged and began to doubt that things would get better. Thanks to my teammates’ contagious happiness and the unwavering support of my coaches and parents, I improved my attitude and my performances improved as a result. The biggest surprise this season was the progression from a rocky start to such an exciting finish. 

7) What moment/event will you remember the most from this season? 

I will never forget the feeling of standing on the podium at states with Allison: my ski buddy, training partner, and co-captain. It was so fun to end our nordic careers together like that. 

8) Is there anything else that you would like to add?

I would like to thank Joel and Elysha for everything they have done for us. I am incredibly lucky to have learned so much about skiing and about life from them. They’re both going to Greenland in a couple of weeks to ski the Arctic Circle Race: 50km per day for 3 days with an average of 4500 ft of climbing each day. Very inspiring! 

9) What do you like most about Nordic skiing? 

My favorite part about nordic is the community. I will always treasure the friendships I have made with kids from all over the state, and I want to say a huge thank you to everyone who has been a part of my nordic experience! You all have pushed me to be my best and given me so much joy. 

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