Patterson claims silver at NCAA nordic championships

Vermont senior Caitlin Patterson of Anchorage finished second and UAA senior Jaime Bronga of Anchorage seized fifth Wednesday to lead a parade of five Alaska nordic skiers to All-America honors on the first day of racing in the NCAA Championships in Bozeman, Mont.

Patterson earned All-America honors for the fifth time of her career by completing the 5-kilometer freestyle race in 14 minutes, 25.8 seconds, about 20 seconds behind winner Maria Graefnings of Utah (14:05.9).

Bronga grabbed the fourth All-America honor of her career, finishing in 14:40.8. And Vermont senior Amy Glen of Anchorage earned All-America honors for the second time with her eighth-place finish in 15:02.8.

In the men's 10-K freestyle, Montana State sophomore David Norris of Fairbanks earned his first All-America honor by claiming seventh place in 26:03.9, just ahead of Darmouth senior Eric Packer of Anchorage, who took eighth and earned All-America honors in 26:09.9.

All-America recognition goes to the top 10 finishers in each race.

Among other Alaska-connected women's skiers, Jessica Yeaton of Montana State finished 17th in 15:28.6; Steffi Heimer of UAA was 21st in 15:37.0; and Laura Rombach of UAA took 23rd in 15:47.3. Also, UAF's Raphaela Sieber was 33rd in 16:22.7, teammate Marit Rjabov was 34th in 16:31.4 and teammate Crystal Pitney was 39th in 17:14.8.

Among other Alaska-connected men's skiers, Andrew Dougherty of Denver finished 12th in 26:19.9, about seven seconds out of the top 10, and Middlebury's Patrick Johnson was 20th in 26:58.7. UAA's Lukas Ebner finished 21st in 27:01.4, UAF's Logan Hanneman was 22nd in 27:01.8 and UAA's Lasse Molgaard-Nielsen took 26th in 27:12.6. Also, UAA's Nevio Zeni finished 36th in 27:59.3 and UAF's Tyler Kornfield was 37th in 28:26.3.

Dartmouth leads the team race with 214 points, UAA is eighth with 112 points and UAF is 13th with 34 points. Twenty teams are competing.

Alpine events at the NCAAs open Thursday with the men's and women's giant slalom.

Anchorage Daily News