Knafla maintains high standing in water skiing competition

Joel Stottrup / Union-Eagle Kathryn Knafla, second from left, stands on the second place platform at the 10-state regional water ski tournament last weekend in the slalom event in her age category.

Joel Stottrup / Union-Eagle
Kathryn Knafla, second from left, stands on the second place platform at the 10-state regional water ski tournament last weekend in the slalom event in her age category.

Kathryn Knafla placed second in slalom in the 45-52 age group at the Midwest Regional Championship water skiing competition in Wilmington, Illinois, last weekend.
The region includes Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, Nebraska, Missouri, Kansas, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan and Ohio.
Knafla, a local chiropractor, said she was “good with” her  second-place finish. A second is what she has usually been getting in the regional championship water skiing tournaments, she said. Her best showing was in 2012 when she won the regional championship in her age group in slalom.
Knafla, who has won in her event and age group many times in the Minnesota State Championship, competes next in the National Water Ski Championship in San Marcos, Texas. She placed first in slalom and tricks in her age group in this year’s state championship in Center City the last weekend of July.
The tournaments all have slalom, tricks and jumping to enter, and a skier can enter only one if they like. She said she most often just competes in slalom because that is her strongest area.
Knafla competes in about 10 water skiing competitions in a year. She began water skiing at age 10 while visiting her parents’ lake cabin in Pierz. She entered her first water skiing tournament at 14, which was the state championship in Shoreview, and placed third in slalom for girls under age 18.
Knafla said she likes the skiing competitions because they can be exciting.
She said she especially enjoys the regional and national water ski events because they have the top skiers and she gets to meet new people and see ones that she doesn’t normally see the rest of the year.

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