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Ruppertsberger, Gill impressive in Women's 15K Classic race at NCAAs

Natalie Ruppertsberger finished 24th out of 39 competitors from across the country in the Women's 15K Classic Technique Mass Start race at NCAAs. (File photo by Lincoln Benedict '09)

Ruppertsberger

Gill

Canney

Heldman

Holland

Manter

STOWE, Vt. -- Bates seniors Natalie Ruppertsberger and Kirsten Gill made an impressive showing on Friday in the Women's 15K Classical Technique Mass Start race at the NCAA National Collegiate Skiing Championships, placing 24th and 28th, respectively.

Ruppertsberger (Plainfield, N.H.) completed the course at Trapp Family Resort in 57:19.2, sandwiched between a pair of stalwarts from the University of Vermont: Caitlin Patterson in 23rd and Lucy Garrec in 25th.

Gill (Jackson, N.H.) finished in 58:28.2, close behind Montana State's Casey Kutz, earning another 12 team points to add to Ruppertsberger's 16.

UPDATE: Bates' combined alpine and Nordic ski teams scored 196 points at NCAAs to finish 11th out of 21 teams, 34 points behind 10th-place Montana State and 11 points ahead of Northern Michigan. Bates placed ahead of such perennial rivals as Williams (149), Colby (121) and St. Lawrence (95).

It is Bates' highest finish at the NCAA Championships since 1998, when the Bobcats were ninth. It is also the Bobcats' sixth straight year finishing among the top 16 NCAA skiing programs.

Wednesday Recap

Ruppertsberger and Gill took 32nd and 33rd places, respectively, in the Women's 5K Freestyle Individual Start race on Wednesday, the opening day of competition at the NCAA National Collegiate Skiing Championships.

Ruppertsberger, making her third NCAA appearance and competing in her fifth career NCAA race, started fourth in the field of 39 skiers and finished the 5K course at Trapp Family Resort in 15:31.3, just 0.2 seconds behind Alena Tofte of Harvard. Gill, competing in her first NCAA Championship race, was next best in 15:35.6.

The Bates Nordic skiing duo's alpine teammates also competed on Wednesday at Stowe Mountain Resort -- the giant slalom schedule was moved up a day to avoid Thursday's weather. Junior Bump Heldman (Auburn, Maine) placed 11th in the men's GS, followed by Bates senior Ben Manter (Vassalboro, Maine), who was 19th in the 36-man field, and senior John Canney (North Clarendon, Vt.), who was 27th. Meanwhile, Bates senior Micaela Holland (Belmont, Mass.) took 24th place in the women's GS. Bates' two ski teams combined to score 98 points, putting Bates in 11th place among 21 teams at NCAAs.

NCAA Championship Results

Championship Info

Schedule of Events