Near-Olympians stop in La Crosse

Some of the best skiers not in Sochi were in La Crosse this weekend for the Dan Nagy Memorial Tournament.

Minneapolis native Michael Ankeny began skiing at age nine. He won a junior race at age 10 and earned a spot on the US Development team. Now, he’s a US Championships medalist and World Cup starter. After battling some injuries, however, Ankeny narrowly missed qualifying for the 2014 Winter Olympics.

He’s not the first skier to hope a trip to Mt. La Crosse helps lead to a trip to the next Olympics.

“This hill is one of the best in the Central Region, for sure,” he said. “Whenever I bring my teammates back, they come here and they’re like, oh, this is legit, for sure. Nolan Kasper was here two years ago and then [Saturday], in the slalom in the Olympics, he was 13th. So it’s cool to see the amount of talent that comes back through this hill.”