The Mountain Times

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KMS appoints Sam Tarrant freestyle head coach and Kevin Merchant freeskiing head coach; additional coaches named

As the Killington Mountain School's (KMS) growth continues, so does its installation of talented, industry-respected coaches to its programs. Matt Gnoza, action sports athletic director for KMS, recently announced the following appointments to the ski academy's freestyle and freeskiing programs.

Sam Tarrant returns to KMS for his seventh season as the head mogul coach for all mogul programs, from development to the FIS Nor-Am level. Tarrant began coaching at the Killington Ski Club for KMS as a development coach in 2006 before joining the KMS freestyle coaching staff in 2010. He is a USSA Level 3 aerial coach, USSA Level 2 mogul coach. Sam hails from Saratoga Springs, NY, and grew up competing in the Eastern B mogul circuit before heading to an academy in Colorado where he was a freestyle mogul skier out of the Rocky Mountain Division. He also is a member of the KMS communications department where he is involved in the marketing strategy, branding and social media components for the school. Tarrant holds an MBA from Southern New Hampshire University and enjoys sailing and fly-fishing when he's not skiing or training student-athletes.

This year, KMS alum Cory Albert '06 will join Tarrant as the assistant mogul coach for student-athletes. After graduating from KMS, Albert studied at the University of Vermont and earned a B.S. in Outdoor Recreation Management. He is a USSA Level 3 aerials coach and USSA Level 2 mogul coach. He has been coaching freestyle for the past six years.

In freeskiing, Kevin Merchant returns again this year to KMS as the head freeskiing coach for all freeskiing programs including slopestyle, halfpipe, big air and rail jam. Kevin began coaching at the Killington Ski Club for KMS as a mountain division coach before joining the KMS freeskiing coaching staff in 2010. He was born and learned to ski in Alaska and then in 1997 he moved to western Pennsylvania where he began competing. In 2004 he became a PSIA Level 1 ski instructor. Merchant holds a bachelor's degree in Physical Education from Castleton State College, where he played for the men's soccer team and became a certified soccer coach.

New to the freeskiing and mogul coaching mix this year is DJ Goodhue as assistant freeskiing/mogul coach. Goodhue began competing in USSA Freestyle events as an adolescent for the Sugarbush Mogul Team. He attended KMS in 2005 and 2006, competing in mogul and half-pipe events. During these years, Goodhue qualified for Junior Olympics in Park City, Utah. After he attended KMS, he returned to home for his senior year of high school and coached the Sugarbush freestyle team on weekends.
Killington Mountain School is a fully approved Vermont independent school whose mission is to inspire students to pursue excellence in academics and athletics in a culture that promotes integrity, leadership, responsibility, and respect. The school offers a new nine-month academic program in addition to its five-month program.

KMS freestyle alumni include: Michael Morse '99, 2010 U.S. Olympic team member and 2008 National Champion in moguls and dual moguls; Evan Dybvig '97 - Nagano and Salt Lake Olympics, Two-time National Champion; Bryan Zemba '10 - 2011 Junior World Freestyle Champion; Luke Westerlund '98 - 2004 US National Mogul Champion; Evan Rapps '96, who skied for the U.S. Freestyle Team, but is known for his musical interests and a successful career in the skiing community as one of the innovators in the freeride movement; and Olympian and four-time World Pro Tour Champion Chuck Martin.

For more info visit www.killingtonmountainschool.org