Home Forums SkiAmmy’s 2017 Team of the Year

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    The MCWSA
    The MCWSA

    What team had the biggest improvement, largest growth, or posted massive scores? Nominate a team below, and let us know why you think they deserve the award!


    Margaret Silhasek

    University of Nebraska-Lincoln

    Although the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s water ski club team is still young and growing, what its accomplished in the past five years is truly incredible. A main goal of USA Water Ski and the NCWSA is to promote the growth and development of water skiing, and UNL has taken this and run with it. Most of the skiers at UNL come to the team having spent minimal time on the water, and many have never skied before, much less tricked or jumped. The team recognizes it’s not about how great someone is at skiing, but rather introducing them to the life on the water. This past year, UNL hosted a basic skills clinic at Championship Lake Estates to teach interested students about water skiing and let them give it a try! This skills clinic alone introduced 20 new skiers to the sport and 11 new skiers to the team.

    Not only did the team grow the sport in Nebraska, but they also did an incredible amount of fundraising to put towards purchasing a new team boat in (hopefully) the next year! The team takes time out of their weeknights in the winter and works concessions for Husker Basketball games. In all, the team raised about $6,000 just last winter alone. While Nebraska had great success in drawing people to the sport this past year, their involvement didn’t stop there! Individuals on the team strive to learn as much as possible about the sport, and they do so by getting involved in every possible way they can both at and outside of tournaments. It is not uncommon to see a Nebraska skier in the boat, on the dock, or sitting with a judge. Last year, Nebraska won Team Midwest Officials Incentive program where they had the most new officials, and this past season they added even more. Not only this, but numerous skiers on the team took time to complete a safety course so they can help. This extra step to ensure safety even came to use when a jumper took a bad fall on the team’s annual trip to Bennett’s Ski School.

    Last but not least, while the Nebraska Water Ski Team has fallen in love with the sport of skiing, and does as much as they can to introduce others to the sport and learn as much as they can, the team understands not everyone gets to enjoy a life on the water like they do. For the past few years, Nebraska has helped Championship Lake Estates and CHI Health host an adaptive water ski tournament. Most of the 20+ person team shows up to help–whether it be side skiing, pulling rope, or helping get skiers ready to ski. While it is a tiring day for the skiers, everyone on the team can agree it’s their favorite event of the year just being able to see the smiles and hear the laughter of people experiencing water skiing.

    Overall, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Water Ski Team exemplifies what it means to be a well-rounded team. The team has introduced well over 50 students to the sport in just its five years as a team. Not only this, but the members are continuously looking for ways to grow as individuals and skiers, which is apparent in their willingness to help officiate and safety. Lastly, Nebraski has taken the mantra of sharing their “Life on the Water” with individuals who aren’t as fortunate to spend their afternoons after a hard day of class skiing on the lake. By taking initiative to grow as a team and as individuals, both on and off the water, the Nebraska Water Ski has continuously improved each season. The team usually practices at state recreation lakes about 30 minutes from campus and constantly fights closures due to toxic blue green algae and E coli. However, in just it’s 5th year as a competing team, Nebraska qualified for Midwest Collegiate Regionals for its 4th year—and had its best finish yet this last year—truly showing they don’t let anything stop them from improving and enjoying the life of collegiate water ski!


    Nick Ostrander

    The Ohio State University


    Andrew Shea

    Ohio State

    Ohio State put up another strong year and is more than deserving of team of the year. OSU got the 3-peat conference championship as well as the repeat Midwest Regional championship. The team’s skiing, on the male and female side of things, speaks for itself.

    Aside from skiing you will always see OSU skiers driving, judging, scoring, and just generally helping out around the tournament. The qualifications that our teammates hold to run a tournament are unparalleled! This dedication to helping the sport and making sure tournaments are not short-staffed shows the selflessness of the team.

    Aside from skiing Ohio State has done a lot to push the sport, specifically collegiate skiing, forward. OSU’s Kevin Dammeyer once again hosted the pre-season “We Suck” clinic at Van Wert. This clinic, put on in conjunction with the McClure’s, is done totally for cost. Kevin spent hours organizing it and days coaching any collegiate skiers that wanted to come get expert coaching. This dedication to spreading the sport and helping other teams advance as well is something that makes OSU unique.

    Aside from the “We Suck” clinic OSU, with the help of the Dammeyers, also hosted its 4th Annual Alumni Tournament. This tournament drew over 60 skiers and continues to show people what collegiate skiing is about while attempting to get alumni back into the sport. The tournament has been a huge success at getting adults back onto the water and showing new skiers what collegiate and competitive skiing is all about.

    Ohio State really tries to do it all. We make sure that we ski the best we can, help grow collegiate skiing, and help others reach their goals.


    Amber Aho

    Iowa State!!!! This year Iowa State ran our largest tournament in history with 243 skiers, we helped host two other tournaments one of them being midwest collegiate regionals. We made it to nationals while only having one previous 3-event skier. We near doubled our membership on the team bringing large amount of skiers to every tournament. We helped with our lakes first ever disabled clinic. But of it all, we won the HO Spirit Award at Nationals after being the loudest and proudest team there.


    Sara Condra

    Michigan State

    I understand I am bias 🙂 But I believe Michigan State brought so much energy and support to every tournament this year. Michigan State hosted TWO tournaments, one being a collegiate (Spartan Ripfest), and the other a summer tournament, incorporating more AWSA skeirs (Spartan Buoy Bash). By incorporating more AWSA skiers and being in close contact with our alumni, we are growing the sport of collegiate water skiing and attempting to bridge the gap between AWSA and NCWSA associations.

    After graduating 8 seniors last year, MSU had a lot of readjustments to make. The skills and achievements of our team is great, but the attributes that are deserving of team of the year is the unity, love, and outreach of our team.

    Our team does off water team bonding, study sessions on the daily, volunteer to work at local food kitchens, and, at tournaments, are always cheering other teams off the dock, making sure they feel like 100 bucks, especially when they may have no one else there to send them off.

    We won the “Life on the Water” USA Waterski video contest and I think that is the perfect phrase of how our team lives their life on the daily.



    University of Cincinnati


    The team faced some serious obstacles this year. We graduated a majority of our Men’s A team, which had significantly supported the team in the past. Scrapping together a full roster for each event was a struggle every tournament. However, these openings in our line-up seemed to incentivize our skiers to push themselves on the water and step up into a spot. In addition to taking a hit on our number of male skiers, one of our best remaining jumpers was injured for the majority of the season. He was still able to pull off an 84ft jump off a single cut at Nationals though, making for a pretty impressive comeback! Our men’s jumpers did a great job filling the shoes of those we lost from last year. I’d also like to point out how much our ladies stepped it up this year! Our women’s slalom was carrying the men in many tournaments, something that is almost unprecedented for the team. We also had new girls come on the team ready to send it for jump! While some never landed in a tournament, they put in some hard work and will be ready to kill it in the fall. The team put in some awesome work this past season and we managed to slide into the very last Nationals spot.

    UC skiers also took on a lot of volunteer work this past year. We worked the Flying Pig Marathon at 6am and took care of all the relay teams. Many of our members also spent the day at Ampuski, helping bring the sport to people of all types.

    If you were at any of the tournaments this past season, you most likely skied behind a boat with a Bearcat in it. Our skiers were constantly working on judging, scoring, driving, and safety ratings. We now have current safety officials, judges, drivers, and scorers that are ready to help make this next season possible!

    This was a very busy year for the team, and I would say that it was one of our most successful regarding what we had to overcome. Watch out 2018, here we come!


    Zack Worden

    Daddy is his own team … Team Zack Worden


    Zach Brannan

    Ohio State – (all of things andrew said)


    Tiera Salitros


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