PSC strong at Regionals, headed to Nationals

PLYMOUTH, N.H. - The Plymouth State College ski teams are headed to the national championships after strong performances at last weekend's Eastern Regionals.

The Panther men's team captured its fourth straight Eastern Regional championship, and qualified for the US Collegiate Skiing Championships at Loon Mountain (NH) on March 8-11. The PSC women's team finished runner-up for the fourth year in a row, and also qualified for the nationals next week at Loon.

PSC placed second as a team in both the men's and women's slalom Sunday among the 16 schools, the University of Massachusetts winning the men's race and Boston College taking the women's. The Panther men captured the giant slalom on Monday and won the combined scoring ahead of runner-up UMass and third-place Green Mountain College. The PSC women also captured the GS Monday, but lost the tiebreaker and finished runner-up to BC.

The top two racers in the 80-person women's field were PSC junior Anda Curuta (Sibiu, Romania) and freshman Cherylanne Murphy (East Northport, NY). Curuta won the combined title after capturing the slalom and placing second in the GS, while Murphy finished runner-up in the combined after placing fifth in the slalom and edging Curuta to win the GS.

Freshman Heidi Mann (Merrimack, NH) enjoyed a strong meet for PSC, placing 17th in the combined (22nd in slalom, 13th in GS). The rest of PSC's women's entries included junior Leesa Driscoll (New Gloucester, Maine), 23rd in the slalom; junior Tara Eretzian (Turner, Maine), 20th in the slalom and 29th in the GS; and senior Cortney Cote (Gilford, NH), 26th in the GS.

Two of the top three racers among the 80 in the men's race were PSC junior Fred DeBaets (St. Sauveur, Quebec) and sophomore Tim Mitchell (Ashland, MA). DeBaets finished second in the combined for the second straight year, placing fifth in the slalom and second in the GS. Mitchell was a model of consistency, placing third in the combined after finishing third in both the slalom and GS.

Freshman Justin Parent (Sanbornville, NH) also finished in the top 10 in the combined, taking eighth overall (sixth in slalom and 12 in GS). Sophomore EJ Cheney (Bethel, Maine) rebounded from a 35th place in the slalom to place ninth in the GS.

The rest of PSC's men's entries included junior Jacob Manseau (Henniker, NH), 13th in the slalom, and junior Ryan Cornish (Carmel, NY), 13th in the GS.

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