Swaffield wins GS at BC Winter Carnival

ASCUTNEY, Vt. - Junior Whitney Swaffield (Wolfeboro, N.H.) registered her first victory of the season Sunday, capturing the giant slalom at the Boston College Winter Carnival at Ascutney Mountain.

The Panther women finished fourth among 11 schools in the team standings, matching the team's top finish in the GS this season. The Panther men's squad placed third among 10 schools, also equaling the team's top GS place this winter.

Swaffield finished over a second and a half faster than the rest of the women's field, which included 61 skiers. It was her first victory of the season after placing second twice, third twice and fifth and sixth once each. She also had two GS individual victories last season and placed second at the Eastern Regional Championships before earning All-America honors in the slalom.

The Panther women placed fourth behind Brown, Colby-Sawyer and UMass Amherst, and ahead of Smith, Boston College, MIT, New England College, St. Anselm, UConn and Babson.

In addition to Swaffield, PSC got a strong sixth-place finish from freshman Chantelle Heroux (Cooperstown, N.Y.). Other top Panther finishers included freshman Kristy Hoch (China, Maine) in 28th, sophomore Jessica Bouchard (Temple, Maine) in 30th, and junior Amber Elliott (Exeter, N.H.) in 32nd.

PSC had four of the top 14 finishers in the men's GS. Junior Garrett Lashar (Kingfield, Maine) had his best race of the season and placed fourth overall, and sophomore Tyler Barlow (South Burlington, Vt.) continued his strong campaign with a fifth place finish. Senior Bill Feather (Waterville Valley, N.H.) came in a solid ninth, and junior Brent Grygiel (Windham, Maine) finished 14th. There were 90 skiers in the men's race.

The Panther men finished third behind Colby-Sawyer and Boston College and ahead of UMass Amherst, Babson, Brown, MIT, St. Anselm, UConn and New England College.

Plymouth State returns to action this weekend at the Smith College Winter Carnival. The giant slalom races will be Friday at Sunapee (N.H.), and the slalom races are set for Saturday at Pat's Peak (N.H.).