By: Rick Bender
LAKE PLACID, N.Y. — A day after winning his first collegiate slalom, Dartmouth sophomore Drew Duffy provided an encore by taking the gold in the giant slalom at Whiteface Mountain today, while classmate Claire Thomas claimed the top spot on the women’s side as the Big Green remained atop the team leaderboard for the St. Lawrence Carnival. The Dartmouth Nordic teams combined for 189 points at Mt. Van Hoevenburg, lifting the team’s total to 684, 56 ahead of Vermont with one more day of cross-country events to come.
Duffy was impressive from the start, jumping out to the lead by nearly a full second on his first run in 1:03.95. Junior Kipling Weisel also put together a solid time in 1:05.24, putting him in fourth before the afternoon run, while freshman Andrew Miller posted the next-best Big Green time of 1:06.74, leaving him in 16th.
The second run went better for Dartmouth overall with four of the eight fastest times, with Duffy doing enough to hold off St. Michael’s Guillaume Grand by 0.28 seconds in 2:10.34. Senior James Ferri jumped 13 spots in the standings into 11th thanks to posting the second-best time at 1:06.23 for a combined 2:13.55, while Weisel had another strong showing yet finished sixth overall in 2:11.99. Sophomore Jimmy Krupka did not score for the Green, but his 1:06.26 time on the second run was bested only by Grand and Ferri, allowing him to finish 13th at 2:13.62. Yet it was St. Michael’s that won the team title with 119 points to Dartmouth’s 116 thanks to placing three skiers in the top eight.
The women won the GS by a wide margin of 24 points as the Big Green took half of the top-10 times. Thomas was in second place after her first time down the mountain with a time of 1:08.15, trailing New Hampshire’s Emma Woodhouse by 0.13 seconds. Not complacent with her standing, Thomas pushed herself to the best time on the second run to beat Woodhouse’s combined time by more than half a second in 2:17.08 for her first career victory and second career podium.
Thomas had company on the podium with junior Stephanie Currie putting together two excellent runs to finish third in 2:18.04. Also scoring for the Big Green was sophomore Hannah Utter in fifth place at 2:19.93, bringing the Dartmouth total to 133 points with New Hampshire (109) and Vermont (103) second and third, respectively. Senior Alexa Dlouhy (seventh) and sophomore Tricia Mangan (10th) also ended up in the top 10, the latter thanks to posting the third-fastest time on her second run after struggling the first time down.
On the trails of Mt. Van Hoevenburg, senior Taryn Hunt-Smith provided the best finish for either the men or women by claiming fourth in the women’s 5K freestyle in 16:00.2, less than two seconds from stepping on the podium. Freshman Rena Schwartz acquitted herself well in her first collegiate race, placing 10th in 16:19.9 with junior teammate Leah Brams right on her heels in 11th at 16:22.8. That left the Big Green, skiing without all three of their returning NCAA qualifiers from a year ago, with 100 points, good for third behind Vermont (133) — thanks to Lina Sutro’s victory by more than 50 seconds in 14:53.1 — and Middlebury (106).
The Catamount men swept the podium (and the first five places) in the men’s 10k freestyle, allowing them to make up ground in the overall standings and surpass New Hampshire for second. Senior Callan Deline led Dartmouth in 12th place (27:57.5) with classmate Gavin McEwen 14th (28:04.9) and sophomore Adam Glueck 16th (28:19.2) to amass 89 points, leaving them in third behind Vermont (141) and Middlebury (105), just like the women.
The 10K classic will conclude the St. Lawrence Carnival, with the women launching first at 10 a.m.