Collegiate Weekend Recap

FasterSkierFebruary 4, 2009

CCSA – Telemark SuperTour

The Central Collegiate Ski Association competed as part of the SuperTour at the Telemark resort in Cable, Wisconsin. Saturday featured a 5/10km classic race, and Sunday a 10km freestyle. Reports by Matias Saari.

Saturday – 5/10km Classic
Phil Violett and Laura DeWitt of Northern Michigan University were the top collegiate performers on Saturday at the Telemark SuperTour classic technique race in Cable, Wis.

Violett, who like DeWitt was the 2008 Central Collegiate Ski Association classic champion, posted a 10-kilometer time of 30 minutes, 44 seconds to top teammate Martin Banerud by 9 seconds.

Violett, of Brownsville, Calif., placed 12th overall and Banerud was 13th of 134 finishers in the race won by CXC Elite skier Bryan Cook in 29:15.

Among collegians, Santiago Ocariz of Wisconsin-Green Bay, Kevin Cutts of NMU and Oyvind Watterdal of Alaska (Fairbanks) filled out the top five.

For the women, DeWitt, a junior from Rhinebeck, N.Y., cruised to the 5-kilometer college win in 17:35, which was 11 seconds faster than freshman Theresia Schnurr of Alaska. DeWitt’s time was good for seventh overall among 96 finishers in the interval-start race.

Elizabeth Quinley of Michigan Tech took third, followed by Marie Helen Soderman of NMU and Carolyn Freeman of UWGB.

Kristina Strandberg of Saab/Salomon Factory Team won the overall in 16:56, five seconds faster than Lindsey (Weier) Dehlin of the U.S. Ski Team.

NMU dominated the team standings, posting 185 points, followed by Alaska with 158 and Michigan Tech with 155.

The temperature was a pleasant 23 degrees a week after the Mount Itasca SuperTour races in Coleraine, Minn., went off in barely legal temperatures of just above minus 4.

Sunday – 10km Mass Start Freestyle

Martin Banerud of Northern Michigan University is back in form.

Banerud, a junior from Oslo, Norway, easily posted the fastest time among Central Collegiate Ski Association racers on Sunday in a mass-start freestyle in Cable, Wis. Banerud cruised the 15-kilometer course in 33 minutes, 24 seconds, a full 25 seconds faster than teammate Phil Violett.

The pair also went 1-2 in Saturday’s classic-technique race, with Violett winning.

Kevin Cutts finished an NMU sweep of the top three spots Sunday, placing third. He was followed by Jesse Lang of Michigan Tech and Santiago Ocariz of Wisconsin-Green Bay.

While Banerud – who did not race in the first three NCAA qualifiers this season – was easily leading the CCSA, 12 skiers were bunched within a dozen seconds just ahead of him. Leif Zimmerman of the U.S. Ski Team won the overall race in 33:10, with Lars Flora just 1.6 seconds back.

For the women, NMU freshman Marie Helen Soderman of Njurunda, Sweden, took top honors, skating 10K in 24:29. Teammate Laura Dewitt, Saturday’s classic winner, was 5 seconds behind, with Anna Coulter of Alaska (Fairbanks) taking third. Julia Pierson of Alaska and Anna Berglund of NMU completed the top five.

Before breaking through on Sunday, Soderman had registered a pair of second places plus a third place in NCAA-qualifying events this season.

SuperTour leader Kristina Strandberg of Saab/Salomon Factory Team won her second overall race in as many days in 22:53, beating Nicole DeYong by 1.5 seconds. Soderman was 11th behind 10 sponsored skiers.

NMU gained eight of the 12 CCSA-podium positions in this weekend’s races, helping the Wildcats to a comfortable victory in the conference team standings. NMU had 375 points to Alaska’s 312 and Michigan Tech’s 310.

NMU continue to display its depth and now has had nine different skiers (five men, four women) finish in the top three at an NCAA qualifier this season.

Sunday’s race was the fifth of nine NCAA qualifiers for the CCSA this season. The next set of qualifying races will be Feb. 14-15 in Little Falls, Minn.

Complete results can be found at

For more information, visit

Central Collegiate Ski Association team standings, NCAA-scoring
TWO-DAY OVERALL (Saturday classic plus Sunday freestyle)
1. Northern Michigan University, 375
2. Alaska (Fairbanks), 312
3. Michigan Tech University, 310
4. University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, 255
5. Gustavus Adolphus College, 224
6. College of St. Scholastica, 210
7. St. Olaf College, 196
8. College of St. Benedict, 95
9. Northland College, 77
10. Saint John’s University, 74
11. St. Cloud St. University, 58

EISA UNH Carnival

The Eastern Intercollegiate Ski Association raced on the newly homologated trails at the Jackson Touring Center in Jackson, NH. Racing consisted of a classic sprint on Friday and 10km freestyle on Saturday.

Saturday – Classic Sprint

UNH skiers put up a strong fight on the first day, skiing to first place overall after day 1. UNH was led by strong Alpine performances, while Dartmouth led the way in the Nordic.

The Big Green women’s team dominated the podium in the 1.4-kilometer classical sprint, led by sophomore and member of the US Ski Team, Rosie Brennan in 1st. Freshman teammate Stephanie Crocker finished second and Natasha Kullas of UNH took third. Alice Nelson (WIL) was just off the podium in fourth, the only non-Dartmouth or UNH skier in the top 8. Dartmouth captain Hannah Dreissigacker and junior Katie Bono placed fifth and sixth.

Dartmouth men also posted impressive results, placing 4 athletes in the top ten. Senior Dakota Blackhorse-von Jess set the pace for the competition by pushing through the heats to claim the overall win after Sylvan Ellefson of Bates won the qualifying round with a time of 3:19.57.

Steven Bedard of UNH was second, while Vermont skier Jeurgen Uhl rounded out the podium in third place. Dartmouth freshman Eric Packer took 4th, just ahead of junior teammate Patrick O’Brien.

Saturday – 10km Freestyle

Trailing host New Hampshire by 12 points heading into the finalday of competition, the Dartmouth Ski Team rode more strong performances by its women’s teams to win the UNH Winter Carnival at Attitash Mountain and the Jackson XC Center. At day’s end, the Big Green won its second straight carnival of 2009 with 901 points; UNH finished second with 834, and Vermont finished third with 750.

The Dartmouth women were once again led by Rossie Brennan, winner of Friday’s sprint. Brennan edged Caitlin Patterson (UVM) by just .6 seconds in the individual start race. Lucy Garrec of Colby College continued her excellent freshman season, taking third, 9.7 seconds off the lead. Dartmouth senior and team captain Hannah Dreissigacker finished fourth, with teammate Ida Sargent in sixth.

In the men’s race, Sylvan Ellefson of Bates College took the win in a time of 25:03.3, followed by Dartmouth skiers Nils Koons and Ben True in second and third. Koons was 10.6 seconds off of Ellefson’s winning pace. UVM’s Juergen Uhl was under 5 seconds off the podium in fourth.

EISA UNH Carnival Complete Results

EISA racing continues next week in Stowe, Vermont. The UVM carnival is being held as part of the SuperTour.

Rossie Brennan won both EISA women's races this past weekend (Photo: Ruff Patterson)
Rossie Brennan won both EISA women's races this past weekend (Photo: Ruff Patterson)
Sylvan Ellefson (BAT) won the men's 10km freestyle in EISA action
Sylvan Ellefson (BAT) won the men's 10km freestyle in EISA action

ECSC – Cornell Invitaional


MEN: Matt Delaney, Clarkson University
Matt Delaney of Clarkson University won this past weekend’s two-day pursuit race to lead his team to victory at the USCSA Cornell Invitational at Mt. Van Hoevenberg in Lake Placid, NY.

WOMEN: Melinda McAleese, Cornell University
Cornell University’s Melinda McAleese won the weekend’s USCSA Cornell Invitational in convincing fashion, as she finished several minutes in front of her closest competitor to lead her team to victory at Mt. Van Hoevenberg in Lake Placid, NY.

The Clarkson University men won the weekend-long pursuit race over runner-up Paul Smith’s College and third-placed finishers Army at the Cornell Invitational in USCSA competition at Mt. Van Hoevenberg in Lake Placid, NY. Clarkson’s Matt Delaney placed first in the weekend competition in front of teammate Alex Benway. Matthew Piper of Paul Smith’s rounded out the podium.

Melinda McAleese won the women’s individual event by several seconds to lead the host team to victory. Cornell finished ahead of Hamilton College and Clarkson, who finished in a tie for second. Hamilton’s McKayla Dunfey placed second in the race, while Clarkson’s Andrea Walsh finished third.

The ECSC Nordic Division will compete again at the Clarkson Invitation at Lapland Lake Nordic Center in Johnstown, NY on February 7 and 8 in USCSA action.


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