Marquette, Mich. – The Gustavus Adolphus men’s and women’s nordic skiing teams competed in the first part of the two-weekend CCSA Championships on Saturday afternoon. Saturday’s races featured a sprint format in the freestyle technique. Both the men’s and the women’s races measured a 1.6 km course. The two teams will compete again tomorrow in a three-skiier relay.
On the women’s side, Marian Lund (Jr., Duluth, Minn.) led the way with a 16th place finish. The junior crossed the line in 4:28.8 and advanced in the sprint heats by finishing in the top 18. Erica Hett (Sr., Burnsville, Minn.) followed Lund with a 22nd place finish in 4:31.5 and Mata Agre (Fy., Corcoran, Minn.) skied to a 29th place mark in a time of 4:44.5.
For the men, Josh Blankenship (So., Maple Grove, Minn.) finished 21st to lead the way for the Gusties. Blankenship crossed the line with a final time of 3:48.2. He was followed by Scott Williams (So., Maple Grove, Minn.), who was the only other Gustie to finish in the top 30. Williams crossed the line in 3:52.4 for 28th place.
“Our skiers put forth a strong effort today,” mentioned head coach Jed Friedrich. “We just don’t have a lot of experience in sprint racing because we only race one sprint in a given year. We mostly prepare for distance races, but this weekend is still a nice break from our usual race schedule. I think everyone is looking forward to the relays tomorrow to pull out some good races.”