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Ruppertsberger, Taylor lead Bates women in final EISA race







MIDDLEBURY, Vt. -- Junior Natalie Ruppertsberger (Plainfield, N.H.) and sophomore Beth Taylor (Norwich, Vt.) finished the EISA carnival circuit in strong fashion on Sunday, placing 13th and 14th, respectively, out of 64 competitors in the women's 15K Freestyle race at Rikert Touring Center.

Ruppertsberger finishes the carnival season ranked 11th in the EISA's NCAA Qualifiers rankings and is certain to earn her second straight berth in the NCAA Championships at Steamboat, Colo. Taylor ranks 21st, near the cusp of qualifying.

Ruppertsberger finished the race in 54:17.0, just three-tenths of a second ahead of Taylor. Senior Abby Samuelson (Freeport, Maine) finished 24th in the race with a time of 55:27.0.

First-year Lucas Milliken (North Yarmouth, Maine) led the Bates men in Sunday's Men's 20K Freestyle race, finishing 14th out of 64 with a time of 1:02:01.1. Senior Brandon Cooper (Aspen, Colo.) was 16th in 1:02:54.3 and senior Harry Poole (Yarmouth, Maine) was 33rd in 1:05:02.2. Cooper led the men's squad in the final EISA rankings at 24th.

Bates' alpine and Nordic ski teams combined to place eighth place out of 17 teams at the Eastern Championships with 492 points, 28 behind seventh-place Williams.

On Saturday in the women's 5K Classical race, Taylor finished ninth out of 71 competitors with a time of 19:22.5, leading the Bates women to 85 points, fourth best out of 12 teams in the race. Ruppertsberger was 13th in 19:54.9 and junior Kirsten Gill (Jackson, N.H.) rounded out Bates' scoring in 23rd place at 20:13.2.

The Bates men skied a 10K Classical race, led by Cooper, who finished 17th out of 66 in a time of 33:48.0. Poole was 27th at 34:34.3 and Milliken was 35th in 35:16.8.

Link to Middlebury Carnival results