STOWE, Vt. – Freshman Liam Wallace of Alaska Anchorage finished second in the slalom at the NCAA Skiing National Championships Saturday.
Wallace, a native of Calgary, had an exceptional first run posting the third-fastest time in the field (48.72). He took the lead with a second run time of 53.44, but the final skier Jett Seymour of Denver finished with a two-run time of 1:41.49 to Wallace’s 1:42.16.
“Our kids skied their hearts out this week,” said head coach Sparky Anderson. “Obviously the big news today was Liam throwing down first run from bib 19 against guys skiing World Cup and finding himself in contention for the podium. Our coaching staff was on pins and needles waiting for Liam’s second run, and I about had a heart attack when he got back and jacked exiting a flush. He’s such a talented young athlete, and he was able to find the front of his boot and make a recovery. He crossed the finish, and I heard “New Leader!” with only three guys yet to go. He legit put the heat on Louis from Montana and I knew he would at least be on the blocks. Jett from DU put down one of the filthiest slalom runs I’ve seen in years. Flawless. He earned the win today. Nef, leading after first run, got a little greedy and straddled mid pitch putting Liam into 2nd. It doesn’t get more exciting.”
Freshman Sky Kelsey finished 29th (1:58.18).
Li Djurestaal was the top UAA finisher in the women’s slalom placing 25th (1:55.29), and Georgia Burgess was 27th (1:55.88).
Laurence St. Germain of Vermont won in a time of 1:47.00.
“We got four clean runs from Li and G going against a field where four of the top-five were top-30 at World Championships in Åre Sweden,” said head coach Sparky Anderson. “The execution was good, and I expect those two will use this experience to get faster into the future. Sky had a tough first run but fought hard for us and scored some points with a very solid second run.”
Alaska Anchorage finished eighth in the team standings with 204 points, its highest finish at the NCAA Championships since it finished 8th in 2014.