Miles Havlick won the first national title of his career in 2012.
Jan. 4, 2013
The University of Utah Nordice ski team's 2013 season starts Jan. 12 with the 15/20-km Freestyle at the CU/Spencer Nelson Memorial Invitational in Steamboat Springs, Colo. Here is a brief outlook of what to expect from the Utah Nordic team this season.
Miles Havlick enters his final season of eligibility with 19 career podium finishes and six career victories. The Boulder, Colo., native is the two-time, reigning Ski Racing Magazine's Men's Nordic Collegiate Skier of the Year and a five-time All-American.
Four newcomers will join Havlick on the course, including Noé Bellet (last year's French champion in Skiathlon and Vice France champion in Sprint), Tucker McCrerey (ranked in the top 30 in the US for sprinting and posted impressive results at Junior Championships), Einar Ulsund (who took ninth place in the 50-km mass start skate at the Norwegian national championships in 2009 and was 14th in 2010) and Niklas Persson (who won the Swedish Junior Championships 10-km race and took third at the NJC Double Pursuit 20km).
"This group is where one of the largest turnovers on the team can be found so we have a lot of newcomers," Utah Director of Skiing Kevin Sweeney said. "There certainly are some unknowns, but Miles is incredibly hungry to finish up his senior year and if he stays on track, he'll definitely be the leader of this group. What I like about this squad is that we're bringing in some very extremely experienced skiers with high-level national and international experience. At the same time, we're bringing in some excellent talent at the younger level, like Einar, Tucker, Niklas and Noé."
The senior trio of Rose Kemp, Parker Tyler and Marta Larsen will anchor Utah's women's Nordic crew. Each has competed on a silver medal NCAA Championships team and would love to improve upon that result.
The duo of Sloan Storey and Anna Svendsen will join the roster with impressive credentials. Storey qualified for the Junior Olympics each of the last four years, while Svendsen made her World Cup debut last March and also took 16th in the sprint classic at the Norway National Championships last year.
"We're returning several athletes in this group," Sweeney said. "Each of the returning skiers have NCAA experience. Certainly, Rose, Parker and Marta are some of the top skiers in the RMISA and I like what we've done with the recruiting. Anna and Sloan should add a real punch to this squad."
"Our seniors have really stepped up to their leadership roles this year," Holt said. "Rose, Parker, and Marta have a lot of RMISA racing experience among them, and a lot of skiing wisdom to share with the incoming team members. From day one, it has been a pleasure to see the senior women pull the freshmen women into the fold, and I think this makes a tremendous difference in easing the transition into college racing. I can't wait to see the results this group will generate this season."