Saturday, February 10, 2018

Dartmouth wins home Carnival after trading SL wins with UVM

There’s a huge amount of enthusiasm from the whole campus. It’s a carnival: there’s ice sculptures, kids come out [to the races]. Back in the day, it was — that corner down there at the bottom, there was probably like ten deep. Literally. Like, freakin’, a thousand people. More than would come to the football games. It was a roar. A total roar. It’s classic. It’s a great hill.

This was the scene Bruce Lingelbach set when I asked him why he cherishes the Dartmouth Carnival. Lingelbach, a former Dartmouth College Women’s Head Coach of Alpine Skiing — and now proprietor of Pierce’s Inn, in nearby Etna — has seen his fair share of Carnival races. Many of the characteristics he described were evidenced today, and even though we didn’t have a crowd numbering in the thousands, we did see some good racing.

The Dartmouth Carnival wrapped up today with men’s and women’s slalom (SL) races on the Thomas Trail. After all of the weekend’s points were tallied (alpine and Nordic), Dartmouth prevailed over rival UVM by nearly 100 points. The Big Green scored 1019 to UVM’s 920. Middlebury took third with 699. 

In keeping with this season’s pattern, Dartmouth and UVM traded wins in the SL: the Catamounts won the men’s race 129—123 over Dartmouth. And the Big Green returned the favor in the women’s competition, winning by just one point with a score of 122 to UVM’s 121. 

Vermont’s Sandy Vietze took the overall SL win in a time of 1:42.57, just ahead of Dartmouth’s Tanguy Nef (1:42.70), who crossed the line less than .2 seconds back. Vietze’s teammate Max Roeisland (1:43.10) came through in third, a full second ahead of Saint Michael’s College’s Guillame Grand (1:44.17), who was just off the podium in fourth. Rounding out the scoring for UVM was Patrick McConville (1:45.42) in 8th.

(L to R): Tanguy Nef (2nd, DAR), Sandy Vietze (1st, UVM), Max Roeisland (3rd, UVM)

Vietze came into the race with a bit of a chip on his shoulder after yesterday’s GS, in which he finished 16th — well off the pace he’s set for himself this season.

“I was pretty bummed with my GS,” Vietze said. “So I just wanted to go hard and ski how I’ve been skiing. I know I’ve been skiing fast…I wasn’t worried. I just knew if I skied the way I can, then I would win.”

Which may also have been the approach of another Catamount: UVM’s Paula Moltzan (1:46.79) stood atop the podium after the women's race. She has won all four Carnival slaloms thus far. Today, she beat out her teammate Francesca English, who came in second with a time of 1:47.34. 

UVM Assistant Coach Tim Kelley was excited by the strong performances today, especially that of English.

“I was psyched with Francesca…She’s had really good runs [this season], but never put two of them together. Today I felt like she put two really good runs together and ended up second and was pretty close to Paula. Paula continued to do what she does, which is very solid, good, fast skiing.”

Though UVM placed two scorers ahead of Dartmouth’s first athlete — Alexa Dlouhy (1:48.09), who came in third — the 1-2 punch wasn’t enough to earn the women’s SL win. Their third scorer, Josephine Selvaag, was well back in 19th place. Dartmouth was able to sneak in all six of their athletes between UVM’s second and third scorers. 

(L to R): Francesca English (2nd, UVM), Paula Moltzan (1st, UVM), Alexa Dlouhy (3rd, DAR)

John Dwyer, the current Dartmouth College Women’s Head Coach, was content with the result, but he suspects that they have more in the tank.

“I think the girls skied well,” Dwyer said. “They probably could have skied a little bit better, but overall I’m pretty happy with their performance. It was a solid showing.”

We'll see what they bring to the next Carnival, along with the rest of the EISA skiers, as we head down to Williamstown next week for the Williams Carnival. Next week is a big week. The Olympics go into full swing, a Nor-Am series kicks off, and then the real races we’re all looking forward to — the Williams races at Jiminy Peak (GS) and Berkshire East (SL).