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April 20, 2012
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Sammy Luebke claims overall title in North Face Masters of Snowboarding

Sammy Luebke of Squaw Valley clinched the overall The North Face Masters of Snowboarding tour title with a top finish at Snowbird, Utah, on Saturday.

After narrowing the field from the first day of competition, 35 of the world's best big-mountain snowboarders gathered at the top of “North Baldy” for a one-run final.

“We had challenging conditions today, but the fresh snow for the women's final gave us a great start to the day,” said Competition Director Patrick Brennan. “Heavy fog moved in midday, yet we worked through it, with the riders doing a great job at the final stop of the 2012 season.”

Luebke, who rides for Lib Tech, earned a winning score of 85.83 in Saturday's finals to secure the overall tour title. Luebke started his winning run with several stylish airs. He then ripped fast powder turns through the middle section and finished his run with a technical drop in the “Amphitheater” area of the venue.

Fernie's Jamie Rizzuto took a well-deserved second place. After barely missing the podium all season, Rizzuto threw down one of the most memorable runs of the day to earn an 83.33 and second overall for the season.

Brian Bozack of Sugar Bowl earned third place with a score of 78.17.

On the women's side, Shannan Yates of Snowbird won her sixth Master's event, posting a score of 80.17, which was eight points ahead of the next female rider. Yates used her local knowledge of the venue to flow through her run without hesitation, hitting multiple features along the way. She secured her second overall tour title, making her the winningest female rider in tour history.

Fellow Snowbird rider Beth Weissman placed second in the ladies' field with a score of 72. 83, while another Utah local, Cindi Lou Grant, took the third podium spot with a 72.00.

The North Face athlete Blake Paul of Jackson Hole was awarded the coveted Katana Sword, which recognizes talented up-and-coming riders who show promise in big-mountain snowboarding. Paul won the first day of competition with ease.

— Information for this article was provided by Mountain Sports International.

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Tahoe Daily Tribune Updated Apr 20, 2012 12:22PM Published Apr 20, 2012 12:17PM Copyright 2012 Tahoe Daily Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.