Jack Despres Finishes Top-15 in the Giant Slalom; Skiing Places Tenth

Jack Despres action Photo
Photo Courtesy: Cameron Ciccone

SUGARLOAF, Maine- The Harvard ski team concluded the Colby Carnival on Saturday, grabbing a 10th place finish as a team. Sophomore Jack Despres garnered his first top-15 finish of his career with a 13th place finish in the men's giant slalom on the famous Sugarloaf Mtn. (2:02.57). Despres faced over 50 competitors, with 14 of those athletes not able to complete the second run.

Hitting a peak temperature in the 30's on day one of the Colby Carnival, the sun was out with little wind. The beautiful January day brought ideal course conditions for the team, allowing the alpine squad to take advantage of the opportunity and bring in nearly 75 points on the day. Following behind Despres' performance in the giant slalom, senior Carter Kendig was awarded 12 points for his 33rd place finish (2:09.74). First-year Uberto Tarantelli came from behind to find his way into the top-40, placing 37th and bringing in eight points for the team. The finish marked Tarantelli's first time qualifying for run two in his career.

Racing at one of the most popular mountains in the east coast, junior Nellie Ide picked right back up to where she left off the last time competing at Suglarloaf. Ide tallied yet another top-20 finish on the season, placing 18th in the giant slalom. A great first run came from senior Courtney Clark, but she was unable to finish the second run of the day.

The nordic team came out strong for the freestyle events, with two top-15 finishes from senior William Rhatigan (14th/ 26:15.9) and sophomore James Kitch (15th/ 26:15.9). Sophomore Everett Sapp would stay in the top-25 as well, coming in at 23rd. The top performances from the men's freestyle races came after facing nearly 85 competitors, and brought in 76 points. The Orono, Maine native Ursula Volz led the women's freestyle 5k for the Crimson squad at 28th place (15:13.4). Senior Tegan Thorley came in behind Volz with a 37th place finish followed by first-year Lily Brunelle, who brought in 12 points at 43rd.

Day two of the Colby Carnival was again packed with top performances on both the alpine and nordic side. Kitch had his second top-20 performance on the weekend with a 17th place finish (47:26.8), followed behind Sapp in 20th (47:41.4). Sophomore Liam McInroy was the last Harvard athlete to score points for the Crimson, crossing the line in 28th. Thorley led the women's team in the classic 10k tallying 16 points for her team with a 34th place finish, while first-year Annabel Hagen brought in 15 points (36th/37:46.7). Volz was the third women's skier to place for Harvard, coming in at 46th out of 75 athletes.

Ide had her best finish of the season in the slalom racing, placing 11th on the day (1:51.85). Clark qualified for run two and placed 39th (2:00.88).

"Another great finish from senior Courtney Clark," said Paul J. Finnegan Family Head Coach for Harvard Skiing (Alpine) Scott MacPherson. "She is extremely reliable for the team."

Highlights

  • Despres' finish marks his best finish of his career, as well as his first finish in the top-15.
  • The Colby Carnival marks the middle of the EISA regular season, with three carnivals remaining before the NCAA Championships.
  • Ide has now placed top-15 in an event in each carnival this season.
  • The men's nordic racers brought in 144 points on the weekend, despite missing top skier Remi Drolet.

What's Next
The Crimson will travel back up to Maine - this time to Sunday River, for the Bates Carnival Feb. 7-8.