The HWS Alpine Ski Club advanced to the 38th annual United States Collegiate Ski Association (USCSA) National Championships in Lake Placid, N.Y. last week. This year, a record-breaking 536 collegiate athletes representing 67 universities across six regions competed in 24 events within a five-day period.
On Tuesday, March 8, HWS took to the slopes for their first race. Five William Smith students competed in the Ladies’ Alpine Giant Slalom (GS) race on Whiteface Mountain, taking 12th place with a team time of 7:18.16. Jessica Bishop ’16 led the team with a 44th place finish. Rounding out HWS’ top three, Natalie Bishop ’18 and Christine Moloney ’17 also crossed the line with 58th and 59th place finishes, respectively.
Giant slalom style is a higher speed event which involves skiing between sets of poles called gates. The team raced again on Thursday in the Ladies’ Slalom, a more technical style similar to Giant slalom but with gates spaced at a lesser distance requiring quicker turns. Jessica Bishop took 22nd place, followed by Grace Hutton ’16 in 35th and Helen Noble ’18 in 52nd. They placed 10th as a team.
Seven Hobart students skied in their first race on Wednesday, March 9, GS style as well. Charlie Thompson ’18 finished in 42nd place with a time of 2:13.61 and Russell Merchant ’19 in 60th with a time of 2:22.42, earning them a 17th place team finish.
The men also raced Slalom on Friday. Thompson took 34th place, followed by Jack Knorpp ’17 in 44th and Charles Anderson ’18 in 54th. They placed 11th as a team. On Saturday, they took to the slops again for Dual Slalom.
Team Captain Ryan Saunders ’16 says it was the first time the team was able to compete in a Dual Slalom event this season. “It was a packed week, but it was a great experience,” he says.
A total of 17 competitors representing HWS from all class years competed. In addition to Saunders, team captains are Alison Ware ’16, Jessica Bishop and Gabrielle Von Bradsky ’16.
Other HWS competitors include: Audrey Bates ’17, Sam Butterfield ’19, Coco Clemens ’18, Jack Creatura ’19, Colman Lamb ’19, Danny Mcdonald ’19, Haleigh Quigg’18, and Megan Shenton’18
“It’s great to continue a strong season and represent the Colleges against top skiers and teams throughout the country. Having this opportunity in our senior year helps cap a great ski career at HWS for all of us,” Saunders says.
Full results of the competition can be found here.