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Ski teams set to host NCAA East Region Championships

Bates skiers like Alex Jones '12 have one last chance to jump into the field for the NCAA Championships this weekend at the Bates Carnival, doubling as the NCAA East Regionals. (File photo by Lincoln Benedict '09)

LEWISTON, Maine -- There's no bigger event on the Eastern Intercollegiate Ski Association schedule than the NCAA East Region Championships, which are to be hosted by Bates College this weekend at its two home venues -- Sunday River in Newry, Maine, for alpine events and Black Mountain in Rumford, Maine, for Nordic races.

Only the last event the Bates ski teams hosted, the NCAA Collegiate Skiing Championships (in 2009), carry more weight than the Regional Championships, of which there are three across the country: the Central Region Championships (Nordic only) in Michigan and the West Championships in Utah.

The Bates Carnival, as these East Regionals are also known, represent the last bid for skiers to earn a spot in the NCAA Championships, scheduled for March 9-12 this year in Stowe, Vt. On the alpine team, senior Micaela Holland (Belmont, Mass.), currently ranked 19th overall in the East region, may need a strong performance to make her third career appearance at NCAAs, while on the men's team junior Bump Heldman (Auburn, Maine), ranked 19th, and senior Ben Manter (Vassalboro, Maine), ranked 21st, are in similar positions, with junior Alex Jones (Whitehouse Station, N.J.) also having a chance. On the women's Nordic team, seniors Natalie Ruppertsberger (Plainfield, N.H.) and Kirsten Gill (Jackson, N.H.), ranked 13th and 15th in the East, respectively, will look to solidify their NCAA bids while junior Beth Taylor (Norwich, Vt.) and senior Meg McClelland (Keene Valley, N.Y.) may also be in the mix, at 22nd and 29th, respectively.

On Saturday with the men's and women's slalom at Sunday River, beginning at 9:30 a.m. for the men and 10:30 for the women. Nordic races begin Saturday with the women's 5K Freestyle race at 10 a.m., followed by the men's 10K Freestyle at 11:30 a.m.

Giant slaloms are Sunday at Sunday River, with the women starting at 9:30 and the men at 10:30. At Black Mountain, the men's 20K Classic Technique Mass Start race begins at 10 a.m., followed by the women's 15K Classic Mass Start race at noon.

Saturday, February 26th

9:30 am  Men’s SL 1st Run   Sunday River

10:00 am  Women’s 5km Freestyle  Black Mountain

10:30 am  Women’s SL 1st Run   Sunday River

11:30 am  Men’s 10 km Freestyle  Black Mountain

12:30 pm  Men’s SL 2nd Run   Sunday River

1:30 pm  Women’s SL 2nd Run   Sunday River

Sunday, February 27th

9:30 am  Women’s GS 1st Run   Sunday River


10:00 am  Men’s 20 km Classic (mass start) Black Mountain

10:30 am  Men’s GS 1st Run   Sunday River

12:00 am  Women’s 15 km Classic (mass start) Black Mountain

12:30 pm  Women’s GS 2nd Run   Sunday River

1:30 pm  Men’s GS 2nd Run   Sunday River