FAIRBANKS, ALASKA – The University of Alaska Anchorage ski team repeated as champions of the Alaska Cup, the yearly dual with in-state rival Alaska Fairbanks.
"I saw the starting point for a strong season," said head Nordic coach Andrew Kastining. "The team is coming together and it was great to see our skiers moving in a tight pack. “Game ball” goes to Michaela and JC for two strong days and showing a lot of hard work turned into solid ski racing. We leave winners, but they’re hungry for more."
Day one consisted of a classical race of 7.5 kilometers for the women and 11.25 for the men.
Michaela Keller-Miller and Natalie Hynes finished 1-2 in the women’s race in 21:23 and 21:24.
Anna Darnell finished fifth in 21:25 and less than a second later Hannah Rudd and Jenna DiFolco crossed the line in sixth and seventh.
Toomas Kollo led the men with a second place finish in 27:01.
Sigurd Roenning and JC Schoonmaker placed fourth (27:22) and fifth (27:30).
Other finishers for the Seawolves included Tracen Knopp 11th (29:56), Marcus Deuling 13th (30:53) and Brandon Herhusky 14th (31:24).
Day two featured classic sprints.
Sigurd Roening led four UAA men in the A-Final with a third place finish. Toomas Kollo was fourth, JC Schoonmaker sixth and Brandon Herhusky seventh. Marcus Deuling placed eighth in the B-Final.
Hannah Rudd finished third and Natalie Hynes was seventh in the women’s A-Final.
Michaela Keller-Miller won the B-Final, and Jenna DiFolco was second. Anna Darnell finished fourth.
The ski team will compete at the US Nordic Skiing National Championships in Craftsbury, Vt. Jan. 3-8.