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Davis

Davis, California

Friday, May 17, 2024

Water ski club shines in local tournament

UC Davis’s Juraski Park team earns second place  

 

By MEGAN JOSEPH — sports@theaggie.org

 

Extreme heat this past week did not stop the UC Davis water ski team from snagging second place in their tournament over the May 12-14 weekend. There were some outstanding performances by team members that led the UC Davis men’s water ski A and B teams to victory; the entire water ski team also placed second overall.  

With nine other schools competing, the men’s A team won first place overall in three events: trick, jump and slalom. UC Davis received 625 points in trick and 510 points in jump. In the slalom event, the team earned 710 points, putting them in second place behind Western Washington University; nonetheless, all three categories combined to 1,845 points, earning the men’s A team first place. 

Some of the best performances of the tournament came from fourth-year Noah Gaffney and second-year Connor Johnson. In the slalom event, Gaffney cleared 4.5 buoys while going 32 miles per hour on the 18.25 rope. Gaffney scored 64.50 and earned 220 points which put him in fourth place for the event. 

Johnson also put up a noteworthy performance, falling not far behind Gaffney and earning sixth place in slalom. Johnson cleared three buoys on the 18.25 rope going 32 miles per hour. He received a score of 63 and earned 200 points. Together, Gaffney and Johnson’s combined effort catapulted the team to victory in the men’s events against their strongest competition, Western Washington University. 

Gaffney also showed his abilities in the jump event where he jumped 20.4 meters (67 feet), earning 190 points for the team and third place in the jump category. His performance in all three categories put him in second place for the men’s overall skier category with 550 points. 

Additionally, fourth-year Ian Crone had a strong performance in the jump event, placing seventh. Crone jumped 14.7 meters (48 feet), adding 140 points for the team. Crone also earned the team points in the trick category of the tournament. He scored a 200, which translated to 160 points for the team. Individually, he tied for eighth place with two other competitors from Western Washington University in the event. Overall, Crone placed seventh for men’s overall skier with 460 points. 

Fourth-year Jason Vaccarezza also competed in the men’s trick category and earned a score of 340. With such a high score, Vaccarezza gained 210 points for the team and placed fourth in the event. 

The men’s A team was a tough act to follow but the men’s B team kept the pace, also winning first overall. Fourth-year Bryson Dort won first place in the men’s B team slalom and fourth-year Seth Gach won first place in the trick category of the competition.

The women’s A team also showed a lot of skill in their performances in all three categories. First-year Ashley Carroll jumped 10.5 meters (35 feet), earning the team 150 points. This jump also put Carroll in third place for the jump category which was the best UC Davis women’s performance of the weekend. 

Her other teammates, third-year Allison Veiga, fourth-year Taylor Lewis, and UC Davis alum Renee Torree all placed sixth in their respective events. Together, they earned a total of 1,205 points: 375 points in slalom, 450 in trick and 380 in jump. After tying for first place in the jump category and taking third place in the trick and slalom categories, the women’s A team finished in third place overall.

The women’s B team earned second place overall and 510 points in total. While many members of the women’s B team were still perfecting their tricks and jumps, some had admirable performances, like Torre, who placed second in the trick competition, earning 90 points. Carroll and first-year Riley Rodriguez tied for first in slalom. 

Overall, the men’s and women’s water ski teams earned a total of 3,050 points, falling just short of first place against Western Washington’s 3,275 points. 

Written by: Megan Joseph — sports@theaggie.org