Alpine skiing returns to UNR
RENO — For the first time in more than a decade, alpine skiing is returning to the University of Nevada, Reno.
“The Pack is back in women and men’s alpine skiing,” said UNR President Brian Sandoval during Tuesday’s press conference.
The university cut the program in 2010, but following the acquisition of Sierra Nevada University in July, alpine skiing is returning to the Wolf Pack varsity sports lineup.
“We are in a really special moment in the history of athletics at the University of Nevada, Reno,” added Sandoval. “We have all the right people in place.”
Mihaela Kosi, who served as Sierra Nevada University’s alpine skiing head coach since 2018, will lead the program. Kosi’s teams have captured a total of 16 team national titles at the U.S. Collegiate Ski and Snowboard Association Collegiate National Championships. The Eagles captured a combined eight team titles at the 2022 championships.
“It’s a dream come true,” said Kosi, who grew up and competed in Slovenia before graduating from Sierra Nevada University. “I’m honored and grateful to be part of this and I can’t wait to see what the future holds for us.”
Nevada will compete at the NCAA Division I level as a member of the Rocky Mountain Intercollegiate Ski Association. Other teams in the conference include Alaska Anchorage, Alaska Fairbanks, Colorado, Colorado Mountain College, Denver, Montana State, Utah, Westminster College and Wyoming. The team will compete in slalom and giants slalom and will open the season in late December. Nevada won’t host any meets this season but, will explore hosting races in future years.
The program has partnered with Sky Tavern, and will practice at resorts throughout the region, according to Athletic Director Stephanie Rempe. The team will carry a roster of eight to 10 men and eight to 10 women, and this year consists primarily of student-athletes from Sierra Nevada University’s former team. Additionally, the program has 6.3 scholarships available for men and seven scholarships available for women.
The university has a rich history in the sport, dating back to Nevada’s first collegiate team, which was established in 1936 by Wayne Poulsen. The program has produced Olympians Dodie Post Gann, Glenn Jobe, and Katerina Hanusova Nash. Additionally, Olympic coach Lane Monroe came out of Nevada.
The program has won five individual national titles, 39 All-America honors and 14 top-10 team finishes at NCAA Championships. The team will be eligible to compete for championships this season.
Nevada’s program previously included a Nordic team, which, according to Rempe, will be brought back at some point.
Justin Scacco is a reporter for the Sierra Sun, a sister publication of the Tribune. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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