Park City's Jerome lands on podium for secod straight Continental Cup


Park City’s Jerome lands on podium for secod straight Continental Cup{mosimage}POEHLA, Germany — Jessica Jerome earned her second consecutive podium on the women’s ski jumping Continental Cup as she led three Americans into the top five, four into the top 10 Wednesday. Jerome, Alissa Johnson and Lindsey Van went 3-4-5 in the sixth event of the summer schedule with Abby Hughes finishing ninth.

German Juliane Seyfahrt, who swept both events in Park City last month, won her fifth meet in six events, jumping 61 and 62 meters on the 66-meter hill, good for 234.7 points. Teammate Ulrike Graessler was second at 232.0 (62- and 63-meter jumps) with Jerome third again, jumping 60 and 61.5 for 230.1 points under an overcast sky.

Johnson, with her best result of the young Continental Cup season, went 595.5 and 62 meters for 227.6 while Van tied for fifth place with 227.4 points after jumps of 59.5 and 61.5. Hughes jumped 59 and 61 meters for 223.0. Twelve-year-old Avery Ardovino, one of three U.S. jumpers who arrived in Germany this week, was an eye-opening 13th.

“We had a great day,” said U.S. coach Casey Colby. “The hill’s pretty small for our tastes but it was still a good event.” He was pleased with Jerome’s continued consistency, which has had her in the top three during training and the last two meets. Johnson tightened her in-run position, Colby said, “and it made a huge difference.” Van, never a fan of smaller hills, kept her focus for her third top five of the summer.

Ardovino, he said, “was the true surprise today. She came off the plane and was just so excited to be in Germany to compete and that enthusiasm helped her jumping a lot. She was very consistent with all of her jumps on this hill.”

In addition to Ardovino, also joining the top five U.S. women were Karin Friberg and Elisabeth Anderson. Friberg was 37th in the field of 54 from 12 nations while Anderson finished 38th. “They showed good improvement during the few training jumps they got,” he said.

The next competition for the women is Saturday in Meinerzhagen, Germany, before the summer portion of the schedule concludes Aug. 15 in Bischofshofen, Austria. After six events, Seyfahrt leads with 580 points while Jerome, with five top fives, is fourth overall at 292, Van sixth, Johnson eighth and Hughes 11th.

— USSA

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