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Ruppertsberger earns 18th in 5K Classical at NCAA Ski Championships

Bates junior Natalie Ruppertsberger placed 18th in the 5K Classic on the second day of the NCAA Collegiate Skiing Championships, hosted by the University of Colorado. (File photo by Lincoln Benedict '09).

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, Colo. -- Bates College Nordic skier Natalie Ruppertsberger finished 18th out of 39 competitors on Thursday as the NCAA Collegiate Skiing Championships continued with the first Nordic events of the weekend.

Ruppertsberger (Plainfield, N.H.) finished the 5K Classic in a time of 18:02.4, only four seconds behind Dartmouth's Katie Bono who finished in 17th, with a time of 17:58.5. After Ruppertsberger, there was a big dropoff with the 19th-place finisher, Alexa Turzian of Colorado University, finishing eight seconds behind Ruppertsberger in a time of 18:10.4.

Ruppertsberger competes again on Saturday, in the women's 15K Freestyle mass start at 9:00 a.m. Mountain Time.

Alpine skiers, Bump Heldman and Ben Manter, who competed yesterday in the giant slalom, are set to complete again Friday in the slalom.

With half the events completed, the Bobcats currently sit in 16th-place out 21 teams, with 52 points. The Bobcats have a sizeable lead over the 17th-place team, the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay.