Monday, March 14, 2016

Eastern Skiers Put in Strong Performances at NCAA Championships

Steamboat Springs, Colorado

The NCAA ski season concluded this past week with the NCAA National Championships in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. Hosted by the University of Colorado, nordic events took place on March 10th and 12th. The East sent a strong contingent of 13 men and 14 women to compete against the best of the West and Central Divisions.

The first nordic races of the week were the Men’s 10 km and Women’s 5 km Freestyle. In the men’s 10km race the pace was set by Mads Stroem of the University of Colorado, followed by Ian Torchia of Northern Michigan, and Moritz Madlener of Denver. The top eastern showings were put in by Jack Hegman and Jorgen Grav of the University of Vermont in 10th and 13th respectively, and Callan Deline of Dartmouth in 14th place.

In the women’s 5 km it was Anika Miller of Montana State who took the win, followed by Petra Nyncicova of Colorado and Sloan Storey of Utah. The top eastern finishers were Mary-Kate Cirelli of UVM in 10th, Annie Pokorney of Middlebury in 12th, and Katrin Larusson of the University of New Hampshire in 19th place.

The second races of the week were the Men’s 20km and Women’s 15km Classic Mass Starts. In the men’s race Stroem took his second win of the week, while Madlener finished second followed by Niklas Persson of Utah. Eli Hoenig of Williams led the east in 6th place, followed by Hegman in 8th, and Fabian Stocek in 11th.

In the women’s race it was Linn Eriksen of Denver who took the win, ahead of Kati Roivas of New Mexico. Ane Johnson of Colorado was just behind Roivas in 3rd. Olivia Amber of Colby put in a spectacular performance to lead the east in 9th place. She was followed by Mary O’Connell of Dartmouth in 11th and Amy Bianco of Colby in 16th.

The overall NCAA title went to Denver with 567.5 points, followed by Colorado and Utah. Dartmouth College put in the top eastern college showing in 5th place, followed by the University of Vermont in 7th, and the University of New Hampshire in 10th.

Individual accolades were handed out to this year’s All-Americans. Jack Hegman of UVM earned the honor twice for his 10th and 8th place performances, while Eli Hoenig earned his first All-American for his 6th place finish. On the women’s side Mary-Kate Cirelli earned the honor for her 10th place finish, and Olivia Amber earned All-American for her 9th place performance.