The Ute skiers will have little over a week to recover before trekking off to Bozeman, Mont., for the Regional Championships.
Feb. 7, 2005
Ute skiers compete in the New Mexico Invitational, with the alpine team heading to Taos, N.M. and the nordic squad traveling to Red River, N.M. This two-day event will be held Friday and Saturday, Feb. 11-12. Events will be held all day.
This will be the last invite before the Regional Championships, which takes place in Bozeman, Mont, Feb. 25-26.
The Utes didn't compete last week, on the heels of a stellar second-place finish at the Denver Invitational, Jan. 28-29. Utah claimed a nine-point first-place lead after the giant slalom and freestyle events, but were beatout by Denver's second day slalom and classical results.
The Pioneers finished first overall, while the Utes skied second. New Mexico notched third and Colorado claimed fourth. Alaska-Anchorage placed fifth to round out the Rocky Mountain Intercollegiate Skiing Association (RMISA) competition.
Several Utes finished with season-best results, while taking home the Utes' best overall team finish of the season. Freshman Kim Stephens had a breakout weekend, racing to second in the GS and seventh in the SL. Senior Rowena Hyldahl also recorded a season-best finish with a ninth-place performance in the SL.
The nordic team skied equally as well, led by Ute skiers Daniel Sonntag (2nd FS), Magnus Carlsson (8th FS, 7th CL) and Sandra Gredig (3rd FS, 5th CL). Junior Linda Pettersson finished with a season best 17th-place finish.
2005 SKI RACING MAGAZINE PRESEASON RANKINGS:
Utah 144 Denver 141 New Mexico 139 Colorado 131 Vermont 117 Alaska-Anchorage 78 Middlebury College 59 Dartmouth College 58 Nevada 44 Alaska-Fairbanks 9
Senior Ben Thornhill has been battling illness over the past few weeks and is hopeful to compete in this weekend's events.
Junior Andi Weiser will miss the rest of the 2005 season due to a knee injury sustained during a training run prior to the Utah Invite. The Nova Gorica, Slovenia, native will rejoin the team next season.
QUOTING COACH SWEENEY:
Quoting UNM Invite: "We have had an excellent week of recovery and training after our exciting results at the DU Invite. This team is on the up and up and I think everyone feels good about our potential. We have demonstrated that we can win in both disciplines so we are shooting to put it all together for the win. As we move closer to NCAA selection, we will focus on two main points: good team scoring with depth, and scoring some good individual NCAA selection results."
Quoting Team's Performance: "It's a long trip for us and the cross country venue is at very high altitude. We will have to be careful how we race and recover there. If recovery is not going very well, I may not start some individuals in some events. It's just too risky to push someone over the edge right now. Our strength as a team lies in the fact that we are very balanced all across the board. I don't want to jeopardize that by not racing someone who is not recovered. We're right in the thick of it now. We need to race smart, prepare well and throw down some good results."
SKIERS OF THE WEEK (DU INVITE):
Alpine Nordic Men Cameron Barns UNR Rene Reisshauer DU Women Luci Zikova CU Martina Stursova UNM
RETURNING NCAA CHAMPIONS:
Senior and two-time GS champion Ben Thornhill will be returning for his fourth-season with the Utes. Fellow senior Lina Joansson rejoins the team after skiing to a first-place podium spot in the SL at the 2003 NCAA Championships.
-Nordic Recruits: Magnus Carlsson and Nicole Naef -Alpine Recruits: Mark Heinrich-Wallace, Matic Ramus and Kim Stephens
Below is the list of schools with ski teams that count in the final scoring of invitational meets:
University of Alaska, Anchorage University of Nevada Reno Montana State University University of Utah University of Colorado Western State College University of Denver Whitman College University of New Mexico Boise State University
The Ute skiers will have little over a week to recover before trekking off to Bozeman, Mont., for the Regional Championships. This yearly event will be held Friday through Saturday, Feb. 25-26. Events will be held all day.