The Gustavus Adolphus women’s Nordic ski team defended its team title at the Minnesota Collegiate Championships on Saturday, while the men’s team finished in second place. The duo of Laura Edlund (Sr., Forest Lake, Minn.) and Sarah Willis (Sr., Willmar, Minn.) won the women’s race nearly two minutes ahead of the second place team. The tandem of Jens Brabbit (Fy., Winona, Minn.) and Kevin Patzoldt (Sr., Grand Rapids, Minn.) took second in the men’s field.
The championships format called for two-person, single-gender teams skiing a continuous relay following a mass start. The first two legs of the relay were contested on a 4-kilometer classic course, while the final two legs were contested on a separate 5-kilometer freestyle course, with the top two teams counting toward team points.
The Gustavus women’s team skied well, led by Edlund and Willis, who crossed the finish line in 54:41. Edlund won last year’s Minnesota Collegiate Championships with Kelly Chaudoin. The pairing of Kathleen DeWahl (Sr., St. Paul, Minn.) and Kathryn Ladig (Jr., Bemidji, Minn.) stopped the clock in 56:52 for third, only 25 seconds behind the runner-ups. Olivia Karns (Fy., Fairbanks, AK) and Cassandra Brady (Fy., Apple Valley, Minn.) finished 11th in a time of 1 hour, 4 minutes, and 39 seconds. Allison Bohn (Jr., Plymouth, Minn.) competed as an “odd-skier out” with Caroline Lund of St. Olaf to finish ninth at 1:01:55 to round out the Gustavus contingent. The Gusties easily won the team title with 18 points. St. Olaf, Saint Benedict, and St. Scholastica tied for second with 10 points apiece, followed by St. Cloud State (7 points).
Brabbit and Patzoldt narrowly missed first place by eight seconds as the pair completed the course in 48:18. Bjorn Bakken and Tyler Kjorstad of St. Scholastica won the event in 48:10. The next Gustavus team to cross the finish line was Eli Anoszko (Jr., Dousman, Wis.) and Andrew Tilman (Fy., St. Louis Park, Minn.) in 51:55 for sixth place. Phil Cleary (Fy., Willmar, Minn.) and Dan Grannes (Fy., Apple Valley, Minn.) clocked a time of 55:35 for 13th place. Andrew Poffenberger (Fy., Stillwater, Minn.) competed as the “odd-skier out” with Saint John’s Kevin Neal to finish 15th in 58:35. The Gustie pairing of Michael Paulson (So., Bloomington, Minn.) and Derrick Brandt (Fy., Bloomington, Minn.) were unable to finish the race. The Gusties finished with 14 points, behind St. Scholastica (18 points). Saint John’s and St. Olaf tallied 10 points each to round out the field.