April Mancuso's feature airs at halftime of the Utah men's basketball game tonight, Feb. 23, on KJZZ-TV.
Feb. 23, 2004
Utah will ski in the WSC/Regional Championships in Crested Butte, Colo., this Friday and Saturday, Feb. 27-28. The opening day will consist of the giant slalom and 5/10-km classical events. Day two wraps up with the slalom and 10/15-km freestyle races.
The Utes finished fourth at the 12th annual University of Colorado Invitational in Eldora, Colo., with 429 points. This was Utah's third fourth-place finish in four invites skied this season.
Overall, Denver won the event and host Colorado placed second. New Mexico claimed third, while Nevada dropped a spot from day one to finish fifth.
Juniors Henning Dybendal and April Manucso winning the 15-km freestyle and slalom events were the highlights of the invite. Henning's first-place finish was a season best. Both Will McDonald and Linda Pettersson skied to career bests at the CU invite in the giant slalom (16th) and freestyle (11th) events, respectively.
QUOTING COACH SWEENEY:
"We are looking forward to the regional championships. Our main focus will be on qualifying and improving our start positions for the NCAA Championships. We should be able to improve on our overall team score as we have had some improvements health wise. However, we may or may not start freshman Lauren Lattimer who is undergoing a right knee injury evaluation right now. She took a spectacular crash in the GS at CU and was not able to compete in the SL."
"We have skied well at regionals in the past and I feel the team is anxious to have a solid team score before we go to NCAAs. This should be a good weekend for us. The team is fired up right now as last weekend's results are not indicative of how good we really are."
Junior alpine skier April Mancuso will be featured in a story about her road to recovery after a back injury that kept her out of competition last season. The story airs at halftime of the Utah men's basketball game tonight, Feb. 23, on KJZZ-TV.
Freshman Lauren Lattimer is questionable for the regional championships, after an injury acquired during the giant slalom event at the Colorado Invitational. She was unable to ski in the slalom race due to the injury. Lattimer is currently undergoing a right knee injury evaluation and is hopeful to return.
Sophomore Jess Kiesel will miss the rest of this season due to a serious heart condition. The Sun Valley, Idaho, native underwent a successful surgery procedure and is hopeful to rejoin the team sometime next year.
Junior downhill skier Elisha Stephens will miss the rest of the season due to a knee injury that happened during the slalom event at the Nevada Invitational.
Freshman Casey Simons was named to the U.S. Ski Team World Junior Championships team after torching the competition at the U.S. Nationals held in Rumford, Maine. The nordic skier earned this honor after several first-place finishes at the 2003 Junior Nationals.
Utah will ski in the 2004 NCAA Championships in Reno, Nev., March 10-13. Race times are TBA.