The United States Freestyle National Championships took place in Steamboat Springs, Colorado on March 18, 19 and 20. The top moguls and aerials skiers from across the United States birth year 2001 and older gathered in nearby Steamboat Springs to compete head to head vying for national championship podium spots amidst a field of world-class athletes, including United States Freestyle Team members.
SSCV’s Jesse Andringa, Hunter Bailey, Edwin Kust, Matt Leseur, Emerson Smith, Trevor Wahl and Dylan Walczyk qualified for the men with SSCV’s Taryn Baker, Katie Coyne, Lyndsey Eckhoff, Kaitlyn Harrell, Kaitlyn Harty, Morgan Harty, Tess Johnson, Hannah Miles and SSCV alumna Heidi Kloser qualifying for the women to compete at this national championship.
The moguls event kicked off on Friday morning after several days of heavy snowfall. Walczyk took a bronze medal that day with Bailey, Smith and Andringa taking a top twenty finish in twelfth, sixteenth and eighteenth, respectively. Kust, the youngest member of the SSCV team to qualify, skied from a sixty-first starting place to finish forty-first.
At the women’s mogul event, SSCV’s Johnson posted a fifth place finish with Harrell, Kloser and Baker landing in the top twenty in eleventh, fifteenth and eighteenth place, respectively. Eckhoff finished her day in twenty-first with Coyne just behind her in twenty-third. Kaitlyn Harty finished in forty-second and Morgan Harty in forty-third.
In Sunday’s dual moguls competition, Johnson took sixth. Top 20 finishes were also posted by Harrell, Kloser and Eckhoff taking ninth, thirteenth and seventeenth, respectively. Coyne took twenty-second, Morgan Harty took twenty-fifth and Baker took twenty-seventh that day.
Walczyk took a top five finish in fifth in dual moguls on Sunday with Smith finishing in ninth and Bailey in twelfth. Leuser, one of SSCV’s youngest athletes in the competition, took a twenty-first place finish with Andringa in twenty-ninth, Wahl in thirty-sixth and Kust in sixty-seventh.
Ski & Snowboard Club Vail Freestyle Head Mogul Coach Riley Campbell commented, “Ski Club Vail held their own in the incredibly competitive field here at National Champs. While we often compete against US Ski Team Members, this is the only time our athletes have exposure to the highest echelon of the US Ski Team. There were several Olympians in the field.”
For a complete list of results go to www.fis-ski.com