Eva Huckova is a five-time All-American for the Utes.
March 10, 2010
STEAMBOAT, Colo. - Utah junior skier Eva Huckova won the women's NCAA giant slalom title on Wednesday on the first day of the NCAA Championships. Sofia Smith and Torjus Krogdahl also earned All-America honors for the Utes as the team stands second in the overall standings.
It is Huckova's first career NCAA title after running the course in 1:54.54. She has finished on the podium at the NCAA Championships in the giant slalom all three years, placing second in 2008 and third in 2009. Huckova has six career collegiate victories and five career All-America citations.
Utah's last national skiing champion was Snorri Einarsson in 2007 (20-km classic). Huckova is the first female to win an NCAA Championship since 2003, when Lina Johansson (slalom) and Katrin Smigun (15-km classic) each won national titles. The last Utah female to win the giant slalom was in 1997, when Christl Hager won her third career GS championship.
Smith finished seventh in 1:57.33 for her first career All-America honor. It is her third top-10 giant slalom finish this year. Anna Kocken had a strong finish with a 14th-place run with a time of 1:58.14.
"We knew Eva could win and it's so exciting," Director of Skiing Eli Brown said. "Sofia took a big step up this year and took another huge step today to get All-American."
Krogdahl had the best second run of the day in the men's giant slalom with a time of 54.22 for a total time of 1:50.30, to earn a tie for ninth place. It is his best career giant slalom finish. Kyle Kung made a mistake on-course and got twisted around but still had a strong finish with a 12th-place run (1:50.70). Max Lamb placed 13th at his first NCAA championships with a time of 1:50.71.
"Great run for Torjus," Brown said. "Kung could have finished in the top five, but to finish 12th with that kind of mistake is just awesome."
"To get these results and have this momentum to start out the week, the team is just stoked."
Denver holds the overall lead with 239 points followed by the Utes at 196.5 points. Vermont out of the EISA is third with 178.5 points. New Mexico (173) and Dartmouth (148) round out the top five.
The NCAA Championships continue on Thursday, March 11, with the Nordic women's 5-km and men's 10-km classical races.