ISHPEMING, Mich.—Michigan Tech’s Oskar Lund and Alaska’s Aurelia Korthauer were the individual winners on day 1 of the Central Collegiate Ski Association’s championships. The 5/10 kilometer classic race was held at the Al Quaal Recreation Area in Ishpeming, Michigan. The Northern Michigan women and the Michigan Tech men were the team winners after the first competition.
Lund outdistanced the field by 30 seconds in the men’s 10k race, finishing in a time of 26 minutes, 39 seconds. Sophomore teammate Petter Sjulstad (27:26) was close behind in 4th, while classmate Jesse Smith (27:39) finished another place back in 5th. Three skiers in the top 5 contributed to a banner day for MTU that put the men’s team in first. George Cartwright (27:09) was the second collegiate finisher. The Northern Michigan freshman was followed by NMU sophomore Kevin Cutts (27:42) in 6th and redshirt freshman Chris Bowler (27:47) in 8th to put the Wildcats in 2nd place as a team.
The Alaska men’s team didn’t put a skier in the top 6 but packed in 5 of the next 7 finishers to place 3rd as a team. Sophomore Alex Morris (27:46) led the team from 7th and was followed by sophomore Erik Soederstrom (27:52) and juniors Ray Sabo (27:56), Einar Often (27:58), and John Parry (28:01) in places 10-13.
Wisconsin-Green Bay’s Santiago Ocariz (27:10), a season-long mainstay near the top of the men’s competitions, rounded out the podium in 3rd, less than a second behind the runner-up Cartwright. Nick Maki (28:38) was the next Phoenix finisher in 19th. Gustavus Adolphus skier Jens Brabbit (27:47) was the other skier in the top 10, finishing in 9th to lead the Gusties. Anders Bowman (28:24) followed him in 16th. Kasey Bacso finished in 28:19 to snag 15th place to lead the College of St. Scholastica men. Tom Jorgenson (28:52) was the first St. Olaf skier in 22nd. Grant Cook (29:11) led St. John’s University from 25th.
Senior Aurelia Korthauer of Alaska (14:29) was the women’s classic champ, edging out NMU junior Christina Gillis (14:35) by 6 seconds on the 5k classic course. She led the Nanooks to a 2nd-place team finish. Sophomore Theresia Schnurr (14:59) in 6th and senior Julia Pierson (15:34) in 12th rounded out the scoring for Alaska. Gillis led the Northern Michigan women to a first-place team finish. Senior Laura DeWitt (14:45) in 4th and Sophomore Marie Helen Soderman (14:58) in 5th made three NMU women in the top 5 for a league-best 82 team points. First-year Henna Riikonen-Purtsi (15:06) led Michigan Tech from 8th place, followed by Jenna Klein (15:38) in 15th and Christina Mishica (15:56) in 20th to put the Huskies in 3rd as a team.
Junior Carolyn Freeman of Wisconsin-Green Bay (14:44) matched male teammate Santiago Ocariz with her 3rd-place finish. Lindsey Marshall (15:39) backed her in 16th to put the Phoenix in 4th as a team with 56 points. College of St. Benedict skier Megan Smith (15:22) finished 9th to lead the Blazers to 5th place. Gustavus Adolphus was led by Erica Hett (15:27), who finished out the top 10 as the first Gustie across the line. Eleanor Magnuson of the College of St. Scholastica (15:31) was in 11th and was followed by Julia Curry (15:48) in 19th. Sarah Fleming (16:12) was the top St. Olaf skier in 26th. Jenny Beckman (16:17) was first across the line for St. Cloud State in 29th place.
Saturday’s 5/10k classic was to be followed by a 15/20k freestyle event to round out the CCSA championships on Sunday, February 14th.