The Great Lakes Conference tournament brought 13 teams together and over 200 skiers to Van Wert, Ohio. Many practice sets were taken on Friday including night jumps at the Pleasant Shores site. The entire weekend consisted of 90 degree weather that was both uncharacteristic of ski season and the start of fall.
Saturday is for the buoys
Teams woke up early Saturday morning for the 7am dock start time of women’s A team slalom. Despite the morning start time skiers were excited to get into the beautiful water and compete in the sport we all love. Awesome scores were posted including Kristen Dammeyer from The Ohio State University with 1 buoy at 32 off followed closely by Michigan State’s Sara Condra with a new PB of ½ at 32 off. Men’s A team slalom competed next with the top score of 2.5 buoys at 35 off by Kevin Dammeyer from The Ohio State University followed by Jose Tejada with 2 buoys at -32.
Tournament life isn’t always about the skiing. Pleasant shores is a great site to be at when the weather is warm and the sun is shining, because there is a nice little cove to spend some time in the water while still being able to cheer on your teammates! And we take advantage of every sunshine filled tournament we can in the Midwest because we know the next one may be rain filled, or cold, or heaven forbid snow covered! 🙂
During Men’s A team slalom, B team trick was competing at the second lake 10 min away from site. Many skiers were able to get up on a trick ski for the first time and even earn their first ever trick points. Men’s and women’s A trick were, thankfully, able to run consecutively after slalom to speed up the process of the tournament. The top women’s trick score was an incredible 1,710 points earned from Kristen Dammeyer and the highest men’s trick score was 1,540 points scored by Andrew Shea, also from The Ohio State University. B team slalom was run as the sun was setting on an incredible day of skiing. A judging clinic was run to get aspiring judges information on how to become a future judge and to hear entertaining judging stories. Following the long day in the sun teams bonded over dinner and night swimming along with the iconic waterslide on site.
Jump day commenced at 7am Sunday morning starting with women’s A team. The day consisted of both entertaining far jumps and extra entertaining falls. A few trips were made by our safety into the water but every skier will be alright. The farthest jump from the women skiers was 63 feet from Kristen “K Money” Dammeyer, followed by 2nd place of 56 feet by Sara Condra, and 52 feet by Jessica Carr. The men’s A team followed with an impressive jump of 118 feet from Purdue’s Jose Tejada. 2nd place was snagged by a 9ft PB of 109 by Kevin Dammeyer and 3rd place was earned by Zach Brannan. Zach jumped 103 feet and snagged his 3rd place spot by jumping .2 meters farther than his 4th place competitor. Many personal best were reached including University of Michigan’s Erik Lukkari making it into the century club with a jump of 103 feet. B team jump was run after A team with many more first lands.
New Great Lakes Conference Board
This weekend, the Great Lakes Conference Board was elected. Congratulations to:
- Sara Condra for returning as the Conference Chairwoman
- Lindsay Grajek for holding Vice Chair
- Kayla Patnode as the new Secretary
- Andrew Olesak as the new Treasurer
Top 8 to Midwest Regionals!
The top 8 teams from this conference tournament move on to next week’s regionals in Decatur IL. These teams include Grand Valley State University, Bowling Green State University, Purdue University, University of Cincinnati, University of Michigan and the top three teams of conferences Michigan State University, Miami of Ohio and Ohio State University.
- Ohio State University
- Miami University
- Michigan State University
- University of Michigan
- University of Cincinnati
- Purdue University
- Bowling Green State University
- Grand Valley State University
- Ohio University
- University of Dayton
- Indiana University
- Western Michigan University
- University of Notre Dame
- Central Michigan University (tied 14th)
University of Toledo (tied 14th)
Full results can be viewed in the scorebook on the USA Water Ski website.
See you at Regionals
Although this weekend brought a few broken ribs, knees, ankles, and ski fins, all teams (quite literally) put their bodies on the line for their qualifying spots and look forward to tearing it up next week at Midwest Regionals!
Feature photo credit: The Ohio State Water Ski Team Instagram