Disqualification means Ridgefield boys ski team is state champ

The Ridgefield High boys ski team and its coaches celebrate the team's state championship.
The Ridgefield High boys ski team and its coaches celebrate the team's state championship.

Ridgefield High can add another state champion team to its ledger.

The RHS boys ski team was recently named the 2019 state champion after Southington was disqualified for using ineligible skiers. Southington had finished first and Ridgefield second at the season-ending State Open championship March 5 at Mt. Southington.

"It's been a crazy end to this season ..." said Ridgefield head coach Adam Rapczynski, whose team also was named the regular-season champion in Class L. "There [was] some discrepancy concerning the eligibility of a number of racers on the Southington boys team."

A review by the Connecticut Interscholastic Ski League — the sport's governing body for the state — concluded that Southington had violated league rules.

"Recently it was brought to our attention that a member school of the CISL raced as an eight team co-op even though they submitted their Intent to Race form indicating they would compete as a single school," wrote the CISL Board of Directors in an email sent to member schools. "While the CISL encourages growth of our member schools and the addition of new schools, the formation of any co-op program must be done with prior approval of the executive director and the board of directors before the start of the season.

"The CISL will remain committed to the success and growth of the league. We will always work with schools to help offer ski racing as a part of their activities for their student athletes. However, we cannot condone a team of 23 racers assembled from eight different high schools.

"As a result, the State Open and regular-season standings will be recalculated and accurately reflect the students who attend the school they raced for."

The CISL issued new first-place medals and trophies for Ridgefield, and Rapczynski and the RHS skiers gathered to celebrate their regular-season and State Open titles.