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March 14, 2014 — The University of Wyoming women’s Nordic ski team is in prime position to win a national title after dominating Friday’s 15-kilometer classic mass start race at the United States Ski and Snowboard Association national championships at Lake Placid, N.Y.
With only Saturday’s team sprint remaining in the competition at the site of the 1980 Winter Olympics, the Cowgirls lead second-place St. Olaf College by 25 points.
“The women crushed it,” says UW co-head Coach Christi Boggs. “It was truly a fantastic day.”
Elise Sulser of Casper took first, with Sierra Jech of Cody in second. Also placing for UW were Bridget Weiner of Casper, sixth; Britta Schroeter of Ironwood, Mich., 11th; and Yara Thomas of Jackson, 18th.
Those finishes wrapped up an overall national individual championship for Jech, who won the 8.5k freestyle and 1.5k classic sprint earlier in the week; and the runner-up spot for Sulser.
The defending national champion UW men are in second place in the overall standings after tying for second in Friday’s ultra-competitive 15k classic race. The Cowboys trail St. Olaf College by 17 points.
“The men skied so well,” Boggs says. “They were just four points out of the win.”
Nathan Hough of Casper led the Cowboys with a fourth-place finish, followed by Kyle Bochanski of Fairfax, Vt., seventh; Pat Rodgers of Casper, ninth; Ben Noren of Ironwood, Mich., 15th; Andrew Hill of Casper, 16th; Taylor Vignaroli of Casper, 18th; and Kyle Carpenter of Anchorage, Alaska, 19th.
“The men fought valiantly, but the chances of catching St. Olaf tomorrow are slim,” Boggs says. “Not impossible, but difficult.”