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Sometimes second place can feel as good as first. The CU ski team overcame a large snowstorm and completed the NCAA West Regional Championship on Saturday, qualifying the entire team for the upcoming NCAA Championships.
Due to weather issues, the giant slalom races were cancelled. Point totals were taken from only six events instead of the usual eight. The Buffs run at a regional title fell short, as the team tallied 409 points to the University of Denver’s 426 points.
In the women’s 10-kilometer classical race, junior Maria Grevsgaard crossed the line in first for her seventh win this season. Freshman Kristin Ronnestrand finished the race in second place, giving CU the top two spots in the event for the first time this year.
Sophomore Alpine competitor Lisa Perricone was another top performer for the Buffs, as she won the slalom race on Friday by a sizeable margin.
Sophomore Josh Bryan made the biggest move of the weekend, as he finished fourth in the men’s slalom. Because of this effort, he will compete as part of the championship team in a few weeks.
Although the Buffs did not win the regional, they are one of only three teams in the country to have a full team of 12 skiers racing for the title of the nation’s best.
In last year’s title run, CU won the championship by the fourth largest margin in NCAA history. The 2006 Buffs team was also the first team ever to win an NCAA title with less then a full squad. A lack of team members will not be an obstacle this year, as CU looks to assert their dominance on the slopes.
The Buffs go for a repeat of their 2006 NCAA Championship performance when the 2007 event begins on March 7 in New Hampshire.
Contact staff writer Ben Dignan at Benjamin.Dignan@thecampuspress.com