NCAA Skiing Championships to Begin Thursday for Wildcats

NCAA Skiing Championships to Begin Thursday for Wildcats

MARQUETTE, Mich.—Northern Michigan University Nordic Skiing is set to compete in the NCAA Championships Wednesday through Saturday in Steamboat Springs, Colorado hosted by Colorado University. Six Wildcats will compete in the national meet, three men and three women.

On the women's side, the three skiers competing for NMU will be senior Vivian Hett (Burnsville, Minnesota), senior Kristen Bourne (Lake Elmo, Minnesota), and junior Nicole Schneider (Plymouth, Minnesota). Hett returns to the national meet after earning an All-America award in the classic race a year ago.

NMU's three men set to compete will be junior Ian Torchia (Rochester, Minnesota), freshman Kjetil Baanerud (Oslo, Norway), and sophomore Lars Soensterud (Oslo, Norway). Sophomore Zak Ketterson (Bloomington, Minnesota) was orginally selected to compete, but is unable to compete after falling ill. Torchia, who redshirted the 2016-17 campaign, will return to the NCAA Championships after earning a pair of All-America awards at the 2016 national meet.

Classic races will be held Thursday beginning with the women's five-kilometer race at 11 p.m. (EST). The men's classic 10-kilometer race will follow at 12:30 p.m. (EST). After a day of rest on Friday, the freestyle races will be held on Saturday. The men will start the day with a 20-kilometer race at 11 a.m. (EST) with the women's 15-kilometer race to follow at 1 p.m. (EST).

A total of 11 Wildcats, seven women and four men were named to the all-Central Collegiate Ski Association teams earlier this season. NMU took the team crowns in both the men's and women's competitions at both the CCSA Championships and Ishpeming NCAA Regionals in February prior to traveling to the NCAA Championships.