Last Thursday, Sierra Nevada College honored its 2013 U.S. Collegiate National Championship ski and snowboard teams at the Janet Pahl and Warren Kocmond Ski and Snowboard Awards Banquet at the Tahoe Biltmore Lodge and Casino.
SNC’s women’s and men’s teams extended their longstanding streak of National Championships at this year’s USCSA Nationals in Sun Valley, Idaho, with first-place titles for overall Women’s Alpine Team Combined and for overall Men’s Alpine Team Combined, reflecting scoring for both Giant Slalom and Slalom.
These latest wins bring the cumulative National Championship titles in the Alpine Combined to 18 for the women and 17 for the men, placing them at an elite level as one of the most successful programs in the country.
SNC also took home first place in the Men’s Snowboard Team Combined — the eighth consecutive overall team title for this more recent addition to the SNC line-up.
The women had an excellent showing with a second-place finish in the Women’s Snowboard Team Combined.
The women also brought home a second-place finish for Skiing Freestyle Team Combined and the men took third place.
With three first-place national team titles and two second-place team finishes, the SNC athletes continued their dominance.
Although the primary focus of the program is team wins, individual athletes also shone.
Individuals skiers Johanna Tikkanen, Melissa Daniels and Emilie Lamoureux ranked second, fourth and sixth, respectively, in the Women’s Alpine Individual Combined; Jaka Jazbec and Luca Ricou ranked second and third in the Men’s Alpine Individual.
Matea Ferk, Johanna Tikkanen and Caroline Klaesson ranked first, second and fifth, respectively, in the Women’s Giant Slalom results. Danny Kern and Marco Gooding were second and third in the Men’s Snowboard Individual Combined, with Ashley Vander Meer and Jenise Spiteri taking second and fourth in the Women’s Snowboard Individual Combined.
Katie Souza won the national individual title in Women’s Freestyle Halfpipe and Rebecca Roberts in Slopestyle; Austin Leal brought home a national individual title in Men’s Snowboard Boardercross.
However, the story doesn’t end on the slopes. Coach Branko Zagar places an equal premium on student performance in the classroom with high-level grades as a pre-condition for slope-side competition.