Zach Hall of Nikiski missed making the Olympic biathlon by one spot, U.S. Biathlon officials announced Sunday.
Hall, 25, finished as the third American man on the points lists from a race series last week in Altenberg, Germany, where two Olympic berths were at stake.
Those spots went to Lowell Bailey of Lake Placid, N.Y., who was the overall American points winner at Altenberg, and Wynn Roberts of Battle Lake, Minn., who was second on the points list at Altenberg and was the points leader at a series of earlier qualifying races last month in Minnesota.
Bailey and Roberts will be part of a five-man team that will represent the United States next month at the Winter Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia. Also on the team are two Alaskans -- three-time Olympian Jay Hakkinen of Kasilof and two-time Olympian Jeremy Teela of Anchorage -- and World Cup overall leader Tim Burke of Paul Smith's, N.Y.
Burke regained the World Cup's yellow bib by capturing second place -- behind biathlon king Ole Einar Bjorndalen of Norway -- in a mass-start race Sunday in Oberhof, Germany. It was the highest finish in history by an American in a mass-start race.
The women's biathlon team for the Olympics will include Haley Johnson of Lake Placid; Sara Studebaker of Boise, Idaho; Lanny Barnes of Durango, Colo.; and Laura Spector of Lenox, Mass. Studebacker helped introduce biathlon to Hall, who was a top high school skier at Nikiski but didn't take up biathlon until about three years ago.
So far, four Alaskans have qualified to compete in Vancouver -- Hakkinen, Teela, cross-country skier Kikkan Randall of Anchorage and women's hockey player Kerry Weiland of Palmer. A handful of others are hopeful they'll join Randall on the nordic team when the U.S. Ski Team announces its final selections Jan. 19.
Find Beth Bragg online at adn.com/contact/bbragg or call 257-4335.