ANCHORAGE, Alaska – The Michigan Tech Nordic ski teams competed yesterday in the opening day of racing at the 2018 L.L. Bean U.S. Cross Country Championships at Kincaid Park Wednesday, Jan. 3. Tech's Reid Goble, Tom Bye and Mitch DeLong finished in the top tier for the CCSA qualifiers in the 15K distance event.
"We had a pretty strong day today, said Tech head coach Tom Smith." The men's side was a major highlight for us. Today was our only CCSA/NCAA qualifying race of the entire week and our men did a 1-2-3 in the CCSA with Reid Goble being the top CCSA skier."
The Tech men's team competed in the 15K freestyle distance race. In a field of 178 skiers from all over the world, freshman Reid Goble clocked in at 40:15.7 for 51st place overall. Tom Bye trailed in 57th hitting the line at 40:25.7, followed by Mitch DeLong (58th, 40:30.4). Because this was a CCSA qualifying race; Goble, Bye and DeLong finished 1st, 2nd and 3rd in this event – beating out some of their best CCSA competition.
Two other MTU men's freestyle finishers earned top 10 in the CCSA; Patrick Acton was 8th in the CCSA and 74th overall with a time of 41:13.1. Olav Vestol was the 9th CCSA skier and 86th overall, finishing at 41:57.2.
Freshman Sarah Goble led the Tech women in the 10K freestyle finishing in 66th place overall with a time of 31:43.3 out of 147 athletes. Amanda Kautzerclocked in at 32:02.8 in 76th place and Erin Lipp followed in 139th place, hitting the line at 36:00.7.
"We are happy overall with the team performance on the day with this being a CCSA qualifying race," added Smith. "It was certainly a tough day conditions wise too. I think overall we've got a good start here for the US Nationals and everybody is feeling good and they're ready to keep it going through the next races and throughout the skate sprint on Friday."
The competition continues today (Jan. 4) with the skate sprint races. The Huskies will be competing at the US Nationals through Sunday, Jan. 7th.