Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Vol. CLIV, Issue 10
Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Nordic skiers, club snowboarders excel at USCSA nationals

The Whitman women’s and men’s varsity Nordic teams swept through the competition over the weekend to second and third place finishes in total team points at the U.S. Collegiate Ski and Snowboard Association’s (USCSA) national championships in Frasier, Colo.

The snowboard club also competed and recorded high finishes from both the men’s and women’s teams. Two snowboarders placed highly in the half-pipe with senior Mike Hague finishing ninth and senior Sarah Nostdal fifteenth on the women’s side. Junior Kelsi Evans placed highly across several competitions, finishing thirteenth in the half-pipe, fifth in slopestyle and fourth in boardercross.

The one sour note of the weekend was two injuries to two club members. Forrest Carver broke his back during a training run for boardercross and Nostdal tore her ACL while training for the slopestyle event.

Nordic skiers enjoyed an even more successful weekend. Five individual Whitman skiers received All-American status including second-team honors for junior Bailey Arend and sophomore Eloise Zimbelman.

Individually, Zimbelman won a national title in the 15-kilometer race by almost 46 seconds.

In addition, the men’s and women’s 3×5-kilometer relay teams finished second and fourth with strong legs from Zimbelman and first-year Tyler Abery. Abery, racing the second leg of the men’s relay, pushed the men from twelfth to second. Arend cited Abery’s effort as one of the highlights of the competition.

The weekend’s events were a step outside of the Nordic team’s normal competition within the Division I Rocky Mountain Intercollegiate Ski Association (RMISA). The USCSA is comprised of other Division III schools and some club teams from Division I schools. The Nordic team found the level of competition a lot easier than what they are normally up against.

“As we are in a Division I conference during the regular season we are skiing against the very best athletes in the nation, many of whom are significantly older/more experienced and are recruited from foreign countries to ski for these top collegiate programs,” said men’s varsity Nordic skier Tyler Abery in an e-mail. “Going up against Division III teams put us against evenly matched opponents and allowed for the amazing athleticism on our team to truly shine.”

“It’s really nice after racing world class Europeans from Division I to race normal American skiers again and beat them,” said junior Warren McDermott in an e-mail.

However, several skiers said that the administration’s recent decision to cut their program tempered the excitement from the weekend.

“After finishing my last race the only thing I could think about was coming back to compete next year. Unfortunately, the day after we got back I was informed that the entire ski program had been cut from Whitman,” said first-year Tyler Abery in an e-mail. “Unless something can be changed it doesn’t look like there will be a next year.”

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All Whitman Wire Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *