Friday, January 10, 2014

Teagen Palmer captures Park City GS

At Western Elite Tech Series

Express Staff Writer

     Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation FIS Alpine Team racer Teagen Palmer picked up the women’s giant slalom victory in a Western Elite Tech Series race Wednesday on CB’s Run at Park City Mountain Resort in Utah.

     Palmer, 19, a sophomore racing for the University of Utah Ski Team, overcame a .58-second deficit to first-run leader Breezy Johnson, 17, of Utah’s Rowmark Ski Academy. Palmer won the second run by .46 seconds and posted the combined victory by .81 seconds over runner-up Johnson.

     In December, Palmer had placed second in an International Ski Federation (FIS) slalom at Snowbird, Utah. She was the third U-21 finisher, in 12th place overall, in Monday’s Elite Tech women’s slalom at Snowbird.

     All in all, it was a great day for SVSEF racers.

     Samantha Busby placed second in the U-18 class and third overall of 32 finishers (53 starters) 1.10 seconds behind Palmer.

     Mackenzie Bachmeier (4-U21) was sixth overall, Linnea Baysinger 14th (9-U21), Haley Cutler 17th (6-U18), Jordan Fitzgerald 19th (8-U18) and 2012-13 Intermountain Cup women’s queen Kyla Miller 24th (11-U18).

     Five SVSEF men finished both runs in Wednesday’s Western Region Elite Tech slalom at Snowbird. There were 87 starters and 62 two-finishers on the course.

     Kipling Weisel (7-U21) was 13th overall, KJ Savaria (15-U21) in 25thplace, Rocky Mountain College’s Harlan Collins (23-U21) finished 37th, Ben Kanellitsas 45th (28-U21) and Tanner Josey 55th (13-U18).

     Other results: Sun Valley’s Amanda Stelling (6-U21) placed 23rd of 53 finishers in Tuesday’s Elite Tech Series slalom at Snowbird; and Stockton Troyer (13-U18) was 59th in Tuesday’s men’s giant slalom at Park City.

     Although she didn’t have top results, Palmer was also part of the University of Utah ski team that won the Pat Miller Invitational over the University of Denver on Wednesday afternoon after four skiers finished in the top 10 of the Nordic freestyle races.

     Utah scored 657.5 points, winning over Denver (649 points). Rounding out the top five were New Mexico in third place (566.5) followed by Alaska (477), Montana State (415), and defending NCAA Champion Colorado (372).

     “I’m ecstatic for us to take the win in the Pat Miller Invitational," Utah Director of Skiing Kevin Sweeney said. “I’m very pleased with how well we scored in all disciplines. Probably most significant is that we garnered some excellent NCAA qualifying points.”

     Besides Palmer, Utah Ute cross-country ski racers Sloan Storey and Kevin Bolger, a sophomore and freshman who competed for the SVSEF Junior Nordic Ski Team, were also members of the Pat Miller championship squad.

     “I feel good about our opening weekend,” Utah head Nordic coach and former SVSEF star racer Abi Holt said. “I think we are in a perfect spot—strong enough that the results are there, but not so strong that we feel like we can coast. It keeps us all motivated and hungry for more next weekend.”

     The Utes compete at the Montana State Invitational on Jan. 11-12 at Big Sky Resort and Bohart Ranch. Also on the schedule is a giant slalom RMISA qualifier on Friday, Jan. 10.

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