Panthers Sit Pretty in Third at Dartmouth Carnival

By CECELIA SCHEUER

The Middlebury alpine ski team traded the beach for the slopes this February break as they competed in their fourth carnival race of the season this past weekend at Dartmouth’s Winter Carnival. 

With 703 points, the Panthers currently sit in third place at the carnival, behind their top two competitors, the University of Vermont (914 points) and Dartmouth (913 points).

 Slalom races took place at the Dartmouth Skiway on Saturday, with Friday’s GS races being postponed to Sunday, Feb. 17 due to bad weather. 

Sophomore Erik Arvidsson once again proved his prowess on the slopes, leading the Panthers with a two-run time of 1:37.44, good for the sixth overall spot. Sophomore Justin Alkier was next to finish for the men’s side, placing 14th in 1:39.27, followed by senior Angie Duke, who earned the 18th overall spot with a time of 1:39.62. Senior Max Stamler had a promising first run, sitting in the eighth overall spot, until he fell four gates from the finish on the second run. Regardless, Stamler’s run only spoke to the team’s ability to occupy the top positions at any carnival. 

“Dartmouth is a particularly easy hill, which means you really have to attack,” said Arvidsson. “In general, we held back a little on the first run, but everyone made nice adjustments.” 

On the women’s slalom side, sophomore Lucia Bailey paced the Panthers with a time of 1:44.27, placing seventh overall. Sophomore Madison Lord was the second-fastest finisher for the women, clinching the 15th spot in 1:45.70. Rounding out the women’s scoreboard was senior Caroline Bartlett, who placed 19th with a two-run time of 1:46.37. 

 “Dartmouth Carnival is always a challenge for the circuit, and with the bad weather and broken chairlift, I think the team did a great job keeping composure,” said Bailey.

 The alpine ski team will return to action next weekend for a team favorite, Middlebury’s own Winter Carnival.

“We love having everybody come out to cheer us on,” said Arvidsson. “We have skied on these hills so many times, and we have to take that knowledge into race day and utilize our home field advantage.”

With a home-turf edge and (hopefully) permitting weather, the team turns its focus this week toward winning a day on the men’s or women’s side. After all, what better place to do it than at home?

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Panthers Sit Pretty in Third at Dartmouth Carnival