Senior Ryan Quinn led Utah with his second-place finish in the men's 10K freestyle event.
Jan. 12, 2003
PARK CITY, Utah -
The University of Utah ski team continues to succeed as day two of the Alaska-Utah WinterGames Invitational came to a close. Both the cross country and alpine teams recorded exceptional marks, placing Utah in the hunt for the first-place finish.
"I'm optimistic to win," said Head Coach Kevin Sweeney. "Our task is to continue to compete on a high level and I think we are doing that. We skied very well today resulting in a terrific outing."
The cross country team tore through the 5/10 freestyle competition resulting in a first-place finish for the men and a second-place performance for the women. Seniors Ryan Quinn, Zack Simons and Torin Koos all placed in the top 10 as the Utes blew by conference foes New Mexico and Denver. It was the first-place finish from newcomer Katrin Smigun that headlined the women's team. Sophomore Barbro Hatlevik skied to a placing of fourth, while freshman Ashley McQueen finished 11th.
"The men's cross country team performed extremely well," said Sweeney. "It was great to see our three top-skiers place in the top 10. I was very impressed with Katrin Smigun. Her first-place finish really helped our score. I was glad to see Barbro and Ashley ski the way they did today, they did an excellent job. I'm really pleased with how the cross country team opened up."
The men's alpine team continued to have its problems, as the Utes two top-skiers struggled in the first runs of the slalom event. Senior Jernej Bukovec and junior Pierre Olsson both missed a gate in the first run, but managed to come away with great second race times. It was freshman Benjamin Thornhill's finish of 13th that led Utah.
"As a team, we are skiing very well," remarked Alpine Coach Aaron Atkins. "We have some things to work on to remain consistent for the next meets, but overall I'm very impressed with our performance."
The third and final day of the Alaska-Utah WinterGames Invitational will continue tomorrow, Jan. 13, as the cross country team competes in the 10/15 km classical events. The mass start race will begin at 10:00 a.m. for the men and 11:00 a.m. for the women. These races will be skied in Soldier Hollow, Utah.