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2013 Year in Review: Koprucki finishes alpine skiing career with state title

As a senior at East Ridge High School, Elizabeth Koprucki wrapped up a dominant alpine skiing career with her first state championship title. (Bulletin file photo)

In 2013, Elizabeth Koprucki finished at the top of the mountain.

As a senior at East Ridge High School, Koprucki wrapped up a dominant alpine skiing career with her first state championship title.

Koprucki won the championship in her fourth state meet appearance in February at Giants Ridge in Biwabik. 

“It’s really nice to go out my senior year with a win,” Koprucki said after the win. “I think that’s pretty awesome.” 

In the two-heat race, Koprucki had a slim lead of five-hundredths of a second over her good friend - defending state champion Megan Danelski of Hermantown - after her first run with a time of 40.44 seconds. Koprucki then torched the course with her second run, crossing the finish line in 35.08 seconds for a total of 1 minute, 15.52 seconds – finishing almost two seconds faster than the second-place skier, Savannah Stone of Brainerd. 

“She put two really great runs together today,” head coach Kevin Seipel said after the race. “It was a very legitimate win and just a great race. It was a perfect ending.”

Koprucki said she laid it all on the line with her second run.

“I knew I only had a five-hundredths-of-a-second lead after my first run,” she said after the race. “With my second run I told myself I had to go for it. I left it all on the table.”

Koprucki, who started skiing on the hill in her front yard when she was 2 years old and was racing at Afton Alps when she was 6, improved her standing at state each year over the past four years. She took 13th place as a freshman, sixth as a sophomore, second as a junior and first this past year.

Following the race, Koprucki thanked her coaches and supporters for helping her pull off the championship win. 

“I really just wanted to represent the school,” Koprucki said. “It was nerve-wracking today, but it was actually a lot of fun. We’re like one big ski family up there.”

-Patrick Johnson

Patrick Johnson
Patrick Johnson has been the South Washington County Bulletin’s sports editor since 2008. He reports on and oversees coverage of high school and amateur sports in south Washington County and Woodbury. Prior to joining the Bulletin, Johnson worked for other Twin Cities suburban newspapers. He is a University of Minnesota graduate.
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