Locals medal in Nordic skiing at Empire State Games

Pittsford’s Paul Pippen competes in the U16 boys race at Mount Van Hoevenberg on Sunday. (Provided photo — Arthur Maiorella/ESWG)

LAKE PLACID — In one of the largest outdoor events in the 2023 Empire State Winter Games, 104 cross country skiers competed in the U8 through U20 age divisions at Mount Van Hoevenberg on Sunday.

In the 5K (3.1 miles) U16 girls race, Cora Hinsdill, 14, of Remsen, won her second gold medal of the games, finishing with a time of 14 minutes, 12 seconds.

Raquelle Landa, 15, of Clifton Park, and Tyler Burth, 15, of Saranac Lake, finished in second and third place, respectively. Landa clocked in with a time of 14:46, while Burth completed the course in 15:35. Maya Garrison, of Lake Placid, took fourth place in 15:50.2.

Locals were rounded out by Lake Placid’s Holly Erenstone (16:37.7) in eighth place, Lake Placid’s Norah Galvin (19:09.1) in 11th and Saranac Lake’s Kelsi Buth (20:37.3) in 13th.

Out of the 12 competitors in the 7.5K (4.7 miles) U18 boys race, Braden Bellizzi, of Honeoye Falls, was the top finisher, winning the race in 18:07. Benjamin Jenkin, of Queensbury, took second place in 18:22 and Daven Linck, of Saranac Lake, placed third in 19:01.

Lake Placid’s Andrew Scanio (19:03) was just a few seconds shy of the podium in fourth place. Owen Keal, of Saranac Lake, took fifth place in 19:28, Galen Halasz, also of Saranac Lake, was sixth in 21:04 and Lake Placid’s Aidan Fay finished in ninth place in 22:51.

On the girls’ side of the U18 race, Molly Heinzelman, of Pittsford, was the overall winner in 23:10. The podium was rounded out by Lake Placid’s Abigail Van Dorn in 23:14 and Old Forge’s Alivia Hopsicker in 23:36.

Saranac Lake native Sophia Kelting was the winner of the U20 girls race in 21:21.5 and Pittsford Maeve Bernhard won the U14 girls jr. race in 15:52. Fellow Pittsford native Talia Goldstein (17:26) took second in the U14 race, while Saranac Lake’s Kaylee Holmes (19:50) was third.

Bloomingdale natives Cadence Kennedy (20:37) and Pepper Laxson (22:41) took fifth and seventh place, respectively. Saranac Lake’s Amelia Evans took eighth in 24:06.

Charles Hinsdill, of Remsen, claimed gold in the boys U14 race in a time of 17:03. Saranac Lake Liam Stoddard took the silver in 17:07 and Old Forge’s Brayden Palermo was third in 21:25.

In the 5K U16 boys classic race, Pittsford’s Paul Pippin won gold in a time of 13:22.9, defeating silver-medalist New York’s Filippos Kogiantis, who finished in 13:44.9. Saranac Lake’s Mason Stoddard took fourth place in 14:22.1.

Saranac Lake’s Alex Evans (16:00) and Trey Mariano (18:51) finished in seventh and ninth place, respectively.

Among the day’s champions included Ryan Mannion, 9, of Lake Placid, who took gold in the 2.5K (1.6 mile) U10 boys race in 11:31. Will Scanio, also of Lake Placid, took second place in 12:15. Maya Lynch, of Saranac Lake, won the U10 girls Jr. race in 13:34.

In the U12 girls race, Grace Bartlett, 10, of Old Forge, was the overall winner in 10:50. Autumn Miller, of Raquette Lake, took second in 14:07, while Saranac Lake’s Elizabeth Henderson was third in 15:09.

Collin Bellizzi, of Honeoye Falls, was the winner of the boys U12 race, finishing in 8:03. Lake Placid’s Will Preece took second in 8:44, while Hayden Hopsicker, of Old Forge, claimed the bronze in 9:42.

Tyler Erenstone, of Lake Placid, was fourth in 10:29, while Mark Fredenburg, of Saranac Lake, was sixth in 12:16.


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