Tahmoush One of the Top 150 Skiers in the State

Christopher Tremblay, Staff Sports Writer
Photos by Steve Bassignani
Issue Date: 
April, 2018
Article Body: 

When your father is always skiing and then your mother decides to take up the sport you can assume you’ll eventually find yourself on skis. Such was the case for Hopedale’s Jackson Tahmoush and his two brothers (one older and one younger) when their parents eventually began taking them up the mountain.
Free skiing with his family at the age of five Tahmoush found he liked his new found sport for the most part, but he was frustrated with certain aspects of it. Upon entering the seventh grade he decided he like the sport enough to join the high school ski team.
“I found it fun and really enjoyable, especially having some older skiers and racers on the team to learn from and help me improve,” Tahmoush said. “Coming in I didn’t know anything about racing, I was young so it was a learning experience. I was always practicing on my form and getting better.”
Upon joining the high school team Tahmoush not only found himself learning from the other skiers, but by the end of the season had really established himself.
“Jackson first joined the ski team five years ago, when I was the Assistant Coach,” now Head Coach Shawn Ashby said. “He had no real race experience, but that first season he slowly progressed to become one of our better rookie skiers.”
Each year since his first season with the team Tahmoush continued to push himself on the slopes, but by the time he got into high school he found himself starting the learning process all over due to a known skiing injury.
“My freshman was fun once I was able to get on the mountain. I had broken my foot in the fall during soccer and missed a lot of opportunity to improve,” the now junior said. “It was like starting all over with a lot of apprehension as to not hurt myself. It was a totally different feeling.”
The rest of that season Tahmoush found himself getting reacquainted with the snow and the slopes and over the next two seasons he worked on building muscle as well as his confidence, but it was midway through his sophomore season when he felt he was back.
“Last season Jackson made his biggest jump in the league standings and just missed out on advancing to the state finals by two spots,” Ashby said. “And by the end of the season he was skiing above any level where I could provide any more useful instruction for him.”
Having not made the state skiing finals by a mere two spots propelled Tahmoush to work even harder while setting his goals higher.
“It was disappointing finishing 25th and just short of moving on, but it was definitely a motivating factor coming into this year. It pushed me to join the Wachusett Mountain Race Team, the junior skier said. “My goal was to do as well as I could while qualifying for the state finals. I didn’t have as good of a year as I had wanted having made multiple silly mistakes, but I did qualify.”
Racing in the MIAA Alpine Ski Championship at the Berkshire East Ski Area the Hopedale captain unfortunately did not have his best day on the snow. Cruising down the mountain at a pretty good rate in his giant slalom Tahmoush pushed himself a little too hard and ended up crashing, leading to a Did Not Finish (DNF) and no score. Then in his slalom race, where he skied deep into the field, the course conditions were rather poor. His performance was good enough to put him in 113th place out of 151 racers.
“He was pretty upset that he crashed, but he went into the race knowing that he had nothing to lose by pushing himself,” the Hopedale Coach said. “Overall, he achieved everything I had hoped for him this season. Although he was disappointed in his performance I had to remind him that he still made it to States and that alone puts him as one of the top 150 skiers in the state.”
Having gotten to the State Championship this year gives the junior skier experience and he’ll know what he has to change when he participates in next year’s competition.