Cook joins Lake Tahoe contingent on U.S. Ski Team |

Cook joins Lake Tahoe contingent on U.S. Ski Team

USSA and Tribune reports

Lake Tahoe’s contingent on the U.S. Ski Team continues to grow.

Stacey Cook, an 18-year-old from Truckee, was the latest to make the Alpine team for the 2003-04 season. She will start on the C team.

Cook joins Jonna Mendes of Heavenly, North Shore’s Julia Mancuso, Sugar Bowl’s Daron Rahlves and Squaw Valley’s Marco Sullivan.

Mendes earned her first podium at the world championships last season and Rahlves became the first U.S. Skier to win the heralded Hahnekamm downhill since 1959.

Mancuso came on strong at the end of last season to win two more medals at the World Junior Championships and her first three U.S. championships.

Record-setting Bode Miller of Franconia, N.H., who became the first U.S. man to win three medals at a World Championships, was among 45 skiers named to the team.

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Erik Schlopy of Park City, Utah and Kirsten Clark of Raymond, Maine are also world championship medalists to make the team.

“We made major progress last season in maintaining the momentum from our Olympic season,” said U.S. Alpine Director Jesse Hunt “and the Alpine athletes are in a position to go for more success and turn up the heat as contenders on the road to the 2006 Olympics.

“Bode and Daron had incredible seasons; Erik and Kirsten and Jonna showed at Worlds the U.S. is not just a one- or two-man show … and (Kristina Koznick) has proven to be one of the sport’s outstanding slalom skiers.”

The 2004 Ski Team includes 24 men and 21 women with nine skiers on the development squad.

Miller, who had two silver medals from the 2002 Olympics, collected gold in combined and giant slalom plus silver in super-G last season as he became the only skier — male or female — to race in every World Cup. He finished second overall and second in GS points — the best American results since Phil Mahre won the overall World Cup crown and the GS title in 1983. He also picked up two more World Cup victories.

Rahlves won the Hahnenkamm, the first American to do that since Buddy Werner 44 years earlier, and added another World Cup downhill win in Bormio, Italy. He also became the first U.S. man to finish second in the World Cup downhill standings.

Clark and Mendes were the surprise silver and bronze medalists, respectively, in super-G at the World Championships.