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Crimson Stays at Ninth In New Hampshire

By Kara T. Kelley, Crimson Staff Writer

Keeping up with past patterns, the Harvard ski team finished ninth for the third time this season at the 98th annual Dartmouth Winter Carnival this weekend. In the last two seasons, the Crimson has earned eight consecutive ninth-place results and has stayed consistent so far this winter.

The Big Green came out on top, pushing past the 10 other competing North East schools. The defending NCAA champions exercised their home course advantage, earning a team total of 725 points.

Of the Crimson’s 256 points, 29 were put up by sophomore Christopher Kinner on the Alpine side. Kinner earned 17 points in his 26th place finish in the giant slalom race on Friday and another 12 in the slalom the following afternoon. Kinner’s performance in the GS proved impressive in Friday’s stacked results, as his time of 1:56.9 placed him in the 26th position, but was a mere 2.6 seconds off the leader.

Although competition was stiff, Kinner’s teammates finished not far behind in the slalom. Freshman Brad Alvarez, sophomore Samuel Harrison, and freshman Alec Boardman landed spots 40, 41 and 42, respectively.

On the women’s side of the Alpine races, freshman Margie Thorp came on strong, finishing first for Harvard in both events. Despite a fractured left hand, Thorp won 10 points for placing 38th in the slalom and another 15 for her 33rd place finish in the giant slalom. Captain Alexandra Teng contributed her share of points as well, landing 42nd in the slalom and 44th in the GS.

For the Nordic events, the Harvard men edged St. Lawrence in the 10K freestyle, a first in recent memory.

In the Crimson’s first long race of the season, the men’s Nordic team skied a 20K classic at the Oakhill course, one which many experienced Harvard skiers had never faced. The eventual winner of the lengthy competition previously skied for the German National Team. The Crimson put up a good bid, with sophomore Trevor Petach in 48th and co-captain Oliver Burruss in 49th. With senior Andrew Moore finishing a few places behind at the 52nd spot, the combined effort put up 24 points for the Crimson.

“You don’t need to win all these races, but you need to get some really solid point production,” Nordic coach Peter Graves said. “It would be great if we were in the 20s or if we got everyone in the 30s, and we’re getting closer and closer to doing that.”

Sophomore Audrey Mangan landed at the 28th position in the 15K classic and 32nd in the 5K freestyle, scoring 30 points. Freshman Alyssa Devlin scored 30 as well, racking up most of her points from her 28th place finish in the 5K freestyle and boosted her numbers further by finishing 34th in the 15K freestyle.

The promising young talent of the Nordic women’s team will hopefully break Harvard’s ninth-place patterns in the future.

“We’ve got the nucleus now, as nobody’s graduating,” Graves said. “We’ve got a lot of young people who are freshman and sophomores and that bodes really, really well for the women’s team”.

Similar optimism was expressed for the Alpine team. Although seemingly consistent in its final results, the entire Crimson squad is already progressing toward higher placements this season, according to Teng.

“In the past, we were fighting so hard not to get last place,” Teng said. “Now, we are actually trying to move up to eighth place, where last place is not even a concern. We’ve really come a long way in that sense”.

Next weekend, Harvard travels west to ski in the Williams Winter Carnival, looking to move into eighth place.

“We are very quantitatively and very seriously knocking the barriers down quite a bit,” Graves said.

—Staff writer Kara T. Kelley can be reached at kkelley@fas.harvard.edu.

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