BRATTLEBORO -- Charlie La Rosa may have been listening to a little Christmas music lately, with "Let It Snow" likely being his favorite song.

The first-year Brattleboro Union High School Nordic coach is taking over for the legendary Bill Jahn and he has nine days left to prepare the Colonels for their season opener at Mt. Top on Dec. 18 at 2:30 p.m.

A little powder on the area trails would help.

"This should be an enjoyable season for us. We have lost our top men’s and women’s skiers through graduation, including state champ Halie Lange, Linnea Jahn and Graham Glennon, but the fun will be in sharing in the development of our younger skiers. The future could be very bright for this group," said La Rosa.

Jon Burdo, Colby McGinn and Oliver Pomazi are the senior tri-captains for the Colonels. The coach also noted that Declan King, Tyler Clement, Spencer Loggia and Jonah Koch look like rising stars for the boys.

"While we may be short on experience this year, our training indicates that there is plenty of energy, enthusiasm and chemistry on the team. It may be a tall order to equal our state-wide results from last year, but we’re going to have a great time trying," added La Rosa.

Assistant coach Amanda Dixon and La Rosa see many bright spots on the girls team as well, including Eve Pomazi, Katie Reynolds, Catey Yost and cross-country running star Nevada Powers.

"Former coach Bill Jahn has been wonderful in getting me off on the right foot and will be maintaining our trails and helping direct our only home race which is scheduled to be a classic style race on Jan. 29," stated La Rosa. "Assistant coach Amanda Dixon is also a former BUHS and collegiate skier and is a terrific skill and fitness coach with a wonderful rapport with the kids."

As for La Rosa, he once captained the BUHS ski team, skied for the Division 1 University of Maine, and coached Mt. Greylock High School of Williamstown, Mass. to a championship in the 1970s.

"I may be a little rusty, but the old sparks are beginning to fly. I love the kids, I love to watch them improve and have fun, and I’m very glad to be back at it," he said.

Shane Covey can be reached at scovey@reformer.com or by calling 802-254-2311, ext. 163.