MARQUETTE — Northern Michigan University Nordic skiing coach Sten Fjeldheim has been named the Central Collegiate Ski Association Men’s Coach of the Year announced the organization Thursday. St. Scholastica’s Chad Salmela was named the Women’s coach of the Year. The award is voted on by all the CCSA coaches.
Fjeldheim guided both the NMU men’s and women’s program to a sweep of the CCSA Distance Championships and the NCAA Regional Championships.
“It’s one of the best men’s team’s we’ve had in Northern Michigan in a long time,” said Fjeldheim. “I think it compares to the era of Chris Cook and Pete Vordenberg when they were competitive at Nationals and were going to the Olympics.”
Fjeldheim praised the way his men’s team conducted themselves over the year. “I think they really supported each other in a positive way,” said Fjeldheim. “They pushed each other in intensity sessions, and they trained a lot.”
“They’re all just really into it, they all want to be the best they can be. They didn’t make excuses, and there was no negativity, towards the weather, or anything.”
“They were super positive, fun to coach, and professional. They were light hearted, and laughed a lot. They were serious when they needed to be, but they had a lot of fun training together and enjoyed it. It was a fun group to be around.”
“They really paid attention to details. When you’re training a lot and when everyone’s training a lot, one of the things that separates skiers is paying attention to the details. Eating right, getting enough sleep, timing your recovery, stretching, watching technique videos, monitoring heart rates—they made all of that a normal thing.”
“It’s a super year. I have a lot of respect for these guys.”
(Information Courtesy of NMU Athletics)