PSC in Top 5 in slalom at Regionals

WATERVILLE VALLEY, N.H. - Plymouth State College's men's and women's alpine skiing teams both finished in the top five in the slalom event Sunday at the Eastern Regional Championships at Waterville Valley.

The Panther men's team placed fourth out of 15 schools, while the Panther women finished fifth. The top five teams in the slalom and giant slalom combined will advance to the USCSA National Championships on Mar. 5-8 at Lake Tahoe, Cal.

PSC finished behind Colby-Sawyer, Boston College and UMass Amherst in the men's scoring, while the Panther women were fifth behind UMass, Brown, Colby-Sawyer, and Boston College.

Junior Whitney Swaffield (Wolfeboro, N.H.) led the PSC contingent, finishing runner-up in the women's field behind Carolyn Lewenberg of UMass. Swaffield had finished third in the slalom at last year's regionals, and placed in the top six in four out of five slalom races this winter. All four of PSC's other women's skiers placed in the top 30 - freshman Kristy Hoch (China, Maine) in 15th, freshman Kelsey Real (Lanesboro, Mass.) in 19th, sophomore Jessica Bouchard (Temple, Maine) in 20th, and freshman Chantelle Heroux (Cooperstown, N.Y.) in 28th.

Sophomore Tyler Barlow (South Burlington, Vt.) paced the Panthers in the men's race, placing fifth overall. Barlow, who was seventh in the slalom at regionals last year, finished in the top seven in all five regular season slalom races this winter. Junior Garrett Lashar (Kingfield, Maine) was the next Panther finisher, placing 16th, and freshman Skip Bartlett (Silver Lake, N.H.) was 19th. Freshman Rob Kiely (New London, N.H.) finished 44th, and junior Brent Grygiel (Windham, Maine) was disqualified after straddling a gate.

The competition concludes Monday with the giant slalom.