UVM claims 10th straight Carnival win


Vermont's Anja Gruber in the lead (Ian Nesbitt)

Vermont’s Anja Gruber in the lead (Ian Nesbitt)

The University of Vermont Ski Team ran its seemingly unbreakable EISA Carnival winning streak to 10 straight on Saturday (Jan. 28) with an 83-point victory over Dartmouth College at the UNH Carnival. Despite missing key Catamount nordic contributors, Vermont still tallied 953 points to the Big Green’s 870 and host University of New Hampshire’s 710.

At a cold and blustery Cannon Mountain, Vermont’s Elise Tefre and Dom Garand claimed their first slalom victories of the year. It was the fifth time so far this season that the winner of both the men’s and women’s alpine races were from UVM. Fellow Catamounts Taylor Wunsch and Travis Dawson finished second and fourth, respectively, while Middlebury’s Hig Roberts blocked the podium sweep in third. With three men in the top 10, including Ghassan Gedeon-Achi in eighth and Chris McKenna 10th, the Panther men finished second behind Vermont. New Hampshire Wildcat Coley Oliver, who podiumed at last year’s NCAA championship giant slalom race, returned to form to grab his first top-5 finish of the Carnival season. 

Following on Tefre’s heels, all three lady Catamount scorers found their way inside the top 5 including Kate Ryley in third and Kristina Riis-Johannessen, who launched an amazing second run attack for the second day in a row, finishing fifth. New Hampshire’s Randa Teschner skied to fourth on the same day that Tefre collected her first Carnival victory since 2012.

Led by Lizzie Kistler in second, Dartmouth rallied to narrow the gap to Vermont. Teammate Sara Kikut finished 10th and Rose Caston collected the first scoring result of her collegiate career in 20th, but the Big Green were still left 26 points shy of the Catamounts. Colby’s women proved they are an alpine force this season as Mardi Haskell and Paige Whistler finished seventh and ninth to give the lady Mules third place as a team.

In cross country action, Vermont’s Anja Gruber handily collected two more individual wins to now claim three of the four EISA victories this season. Her teammate Jorgen Grav matched her win with a victory of his own in Friday’s 10k classic race. On a crisp New Hampshire morning, Grav bested the field by nearly 30 seconds at the Jackson XC Center. Teammates Cole Morgan and Jack Hegman finished fourth and fifth in what became Vermont’s only collective win in the nordic portion of the UNH Carnival, as several key Catamounts were off racing in Europe.

Silas Talbot led Dartmouth in second, followed by Cam Woodworth in sixth and David Sinclair eighth. New Hampshire’s Per Lindgren picked up his first podium of the season in third.

In the women’s 5k, Dartmouth sure took advantage of a thin Vermont roster. Although Anja Gruber and Linda Danvind-Malm combined for the top two spots on the podium, they had no third scorer finishing inside the points. Dartmouth’s Annie Hart in third, Corey Stock fourth, and Carly Wynn in 11th took the team win. Middlebury gave close chase in third, the only team to actually put three skiers inside the top 10 with Kelsey Phinney seventh, Heather Mooney eighth, and Stella Holt ninth.

On Saturday, Dartmouth’s Talbot nabbed his first skate win of the year, followed by freshman Fabian Stocek in second and Sinclar seventh. Laval University in Canada, a non-NCAA eligible team, placed second on the day with Frederic Touchette leading the charge in sixth. Lacking Scott Patterson, the Catamounts could only muster third as a team despite Rogan Brown finding the podium in third and Grav finishing fifth.

Gruber once again led all the EISA scorers in the women’s race. Despite the support of her teammate Danvind-Malm rising to the podium in third, the two skiers simply could not hold off Dartmouth’s three scorers: Hart in second, Stock fourth, and Emily Hannah fifth. Despite the team losses on the nordic front, Vermont’s scoring arsenal in alpine simply could not be challenged as the Catamounts still rose to victory in overall team scoring.

EISA nordic action continues this weekend (Feb. 1-2) with the UVM Carnival at Trapp Family Lodge in Stowe, Vt. The alpine portion of the UVM Carnival was contested on Jan. 10 and 26, and the Catamounts currently hold a 54-point lead over nearest rival Dartmouth. 

 

Team scores at the conclusion of the UNH Carnival:

1. UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT UVM 953.0

2. DARTMOUTH COLLEGE DAR 870.0

3. UNIVERSITY OF NEW HAMPSHIRE UNH 710.0

4. MIDDLEBURY COLLEGE MID 697.0

5. COLBY COLLEGE CBC 498.0

6. BATES COLLEGE BAT 487.0

7. WILLIAMS COLLEGE WIL 481.0

8. HARVARD UNIVERSITY HAR 349.0

9. ST LAWRENCE UNIVERSITY SLU 346.0

10. UNIVERSITE’ LAVAL LAV 226.0

11. BOWDOIN COLLEGE BOW 210.0

12. ST MICHAELS COLLEGE SMC 166.0

13. COLBY SAWYER COLLEGE CSC 157.0

14. PLYMOUTH STATE UNIVERSITY PSU 150.0

15. BOSTON COLLEGE BC 148.0

16. UNIVERSITY OF ME -PRESQUE ISLE UMPI 48.0

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