First place team trophy

MCWSA’s 2016 Great Plains Conference Championships

Rain has not been a stranger this water ski season, and this past weekend at Dream Lakes, it was out again in full force. Skiers showed up to an already mud-filled campsite on Friday night, and with a large group of college students, the mess just got worse.

Wisconsin-Madison captured the beautiful day from the center boat dock.
Wisconsin-Madison captured the beautiful day from the center boat dock. Check out their Instagram for more pictures from the weekend.

Despite the rain and mud, Saturday was a beautiful day for a water ski tournament, and after skiers rolled out of their tents it did not take long for the Great Plains Conference Championships to get underway.  The day started with Men’s A Slalom and Women’s A Jump. Men’s slalom was an impressive competition. Grant Schipper (Iowa State) took the top spot with 2 buoys at 32-off. La Crosse took 4 spots in the top 10, which would help them along to their 2nd place finish overall.

Women’s A jump was a good time as usual. Spectators were in for a treat and a scare with Savannah Leutz (Illinois) cutting at the ramp. Parents who had never seen competitive jump before were leery of their kids taking on the ramp after witnessing Leutz’s “slight” mishap on the ramp. Leutz still took home first in the event and Women’s Overall.

Men’s and Women’s A Trick was next, and luckily it went off without a hitch. The boat drivers, judges, and skiers all worked together, and the trick event sped by. Jarad Meyer (Madison) posted an incredible 3,330 points and finished 1st in the event. Yuka Sasaki (Iowa State), an exchange student from Japan, won the women’s trick event with 1,560 points. Check out Iowa State’s Instagram for photos from this weekend. The day rounded out with Men’s B Jump and Women’s B Slalom, finishing just in time for the evening storms.

Cameron Baxter (Iowa State) flies through the air in Men’s A Jump. Baxter placed 2nd in the event with a jump of 119ft.

Sunday morning, skiers woke to more rain and an even muddier campsite than the day before, if that’s even possible. The day started off with Men’s A Jump and Women’s A Slalom. After 4 events, whether a team made it on to Regionals or not came down to these last 2 events. Women’s slalom flew by, and those that decided to stick around for the day were able to catch the last two rounds of men’s jump.

Wisconsin took home 1st place by only 25 points to La Crosse. The top eight teams that placed in the Great Plains Conference will compete against the top eight teams from the Great Lakes Conference at Midwest Regionals Sept. 30-Oct. 2. The teams who placed top eight in the Great Plains are:

  1. University of Wisconsin-Madison (11,525)
  2. University of Wisconsin-La Crosse (11,500)
  3. Kansas University (10,740)
  4. Iowa State University (10,040)
  5. Missouri State University (9,395)
  6. University of Missouri (7,670)
  7. University of Iowa (7,460)
  8. University of Nebraska-Lincoln (7,405)

The Great Plains Conference scorebook can be found here.

The top eight teams from the Great Lakes Conference are:

  1. Ohio State University (11,090)
  2. Michigan State University (10,075)
  3. Miami of Ohio (9,205)
  4. Grand Valley State University (8,770)
  5. University of Michigan (8,280)
  6. University of Cincinnati (8,030)
  7. Bowling Green State University (6,065)
  8. Purdue University (5,455)

The Great Lakes Conference scorebook can be found here.

It was a great effort by all the teams that competed this past weekend. Skiers did not let the storms get in the way of them making new friends and memories. Good luck to the eight teams who will be representing the Great Plains Conference at Midwest Regionals!



Margaret Silhasek

Lake-loving Minnesota girl who bleeds Husker Red!