The first NCAA race started at 10am on Wednesday morning with considerable gusts of wind through the fields at the Trapp Family Lodge in Stowe, Vermont. Athletes from all around the country joined together to witness and compete against the other determined collegiate skiers for the mens 10k and women's 5k freestyle races.
The men's race kicked off at 10am sharp with individual starts and shortly after Erik Olsvik Dengerud (University of Colorado, Boulder) placed first for the 10k made up of two 5k laps in a speedy time of 24:25. Not far behind was Kornelius Groev from University of New Mexico in second place and Ian Torchia (Northern Michigan University) in third.
Ricardo Izquierdo-Bernier from University of New Mexico earned 4th place. Izquierdo-Bernier said he went out hard to "stay warm in the fields" and worked hard in the woods for the "long last 1k uphill" toward the end of the race!
Bill Harmeyer from east coast University of Vermont placed 5th with a time of 25:06 with Alvar Johannes Alev (University of Colorado, Boulder) just one second behind him. Zane Fields from Colby College earned 7th place with a time fo 25:09. Maximilian Bie (University fo Utah) came in 8th place, but .6 seconds later was University of Vermont skier Finn O'Connell. Zak Ketterson earned 10th place for Northern Michigan University.
The first place female skier for the 5k freestyle race was Julia Richter from University of Utah with an impressive time fo 13:28.
Ten seconds behind her was University of Denver skier Jasmi Joensuu with a time fo 13:29. Joensuu said her "technique worked today, she started off conservative but could push pretty hard toward the end." Joensuu add, "I think it felt pretty good, but I haven't checked the results yet," then she heard she was currently in first place at that time. Joensuu was stunned and speechless and gave her friend a hug immediately after she heard the news. Not only did Joensuu earn an incredible second place, she also won it in style...
Lina Sutro from University of Vermont earned third place only .1 seconds behind Joensuu. Katharine Ogden from Dartmouth College was 5 seconds behind and earned 4th place. Guro Jordheim (University of Utah) came in 5th and Anna Bizyukova (UVM) came in 6th. Abigail Jarzin worked for a respectable and enviable 7th place. Christina Rolandsen (University of Colorado, Boulder) came in 8th place at 13:51, just one second behind Jarzin. Nicole Schneider skied fast for Northern Michigan University and finished in 9th place, with Casey Wright (University of Alaska, Anchorage) just three seconds behind.
Amazing job every athletes, coach and volunteer involved in the NCAA race at Trapp's Family Lodge on Wednesday, March 6th. Now on to the alpine races and last nordic race on Friday!