Ski teams finish season strong at Nationals

The Castleton men’s and women’s ski teams both finished their seasons with impressive performances at the USCSA National Championships in Lake Placid at Whiteface Mountain.
The men’s team posted a third place finish and the women took fifth.
“We worked hard all season and preseason with Al, we trained every day,” said junior Ben Hannah. “We were focused coming into nationals and finished great as a team.”
The men’s squad finished with a combined time of 308.26 only trailing the winner Rocky Mountain College (292.82) and Sierra Nevada College (292.94). Castleton beat Babson College and Clarkson University who finished fourth and fifth respectively. It was Castleton’s best finish at the National Championships in team history.
Freshman Matt Couture finished in 13th place overall in slalom giving him All-American status; he improved his first run time by five seconds to get it down to 1:40.03, good enough to place. He also took 12th in the combined with 103.85 points.
Hannah also garnered All-American status in the combines coming in 13th place with 104.32 points; he also took 16th place in slalom.
“We may not have had the best regular season overall,” said Hannah. “When it comes down to it though, we can ski with anyone.”
The men’s team finished their regular season with one first place finish at Whiteface Mountain, and three-second-place finishes- two at Bromley Mountain and one at Crotched Mountain.
The women also had their best finish in team history taking fifth place in the giant slalom and sixth place in the slalom-their combined score was good enough for fifth place.
Blaire Hooper took 16th overall in the combined event with a total of 148.72 points. Lisa Davis and Ali Spencer went 21st and 22nd respectively with Davis scoring 183.90 and Spencer scoring 193.23.
In the slalom Hooper took 19th place with a time of 1:47.77, Simona Croccolo finished in 1:50.51 good enough for 27th place. Davis took 29th with a time of 1:51.28 and Spencer was clocked at 1:53.28 earning 32nd place.
The women’s team also succeeded in the classroom having five different skiers earning academic All-American status. Croccolo, Spencer, Hooper, Erin Luce and Kelsey O’Rourke all earned that honor.
The women finished with five 2nd place finishes on the season.

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