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March 7, 2003

PSC Women tie for 6th at Nationals

TRUCKEE, Cal. - Plymouth State College junior alpine skier Whitney Swaffield (Wolfeboro, N.H.) earned All-America honors for the second time this week and the third time in her career Friday with an eighth place finish in the women's slalom at the U.S. Collegiate Ski and Snowboard Association's National Championships, held at Northstar-at-Tahoe Resort.

Swaffield's finish helped propel the Panthers to an eighth place in the slalom team standings. PSC completes the national championships in a tie for sixth place overall with Rocky Mountain College in the combined alpine team results.

After finishing fourth in the giant slalom on Wednesday, Swaffield came back with the eighth place in Friday's slalom, earning All-America honors in both events. Swaffield also finishes as an All-America in the combined alpine with a fifth place. (The top 15 of the nearly 100 skiers in each event are named All-Americans). Swaffield placed seventh in the slalom at the nationals last year.

Freshman Kristy Hoch (China, Maine) was the next PSC finisher, placing 30th in the slalom. PSC's other three skiers all fell, but got up and finished -- freshman Chantelle Heroux (Cooperstown, N.Y.) in 54th, freshman Kelsey Real (Lanesboro, Mass.) in 57th, and sophomore Jessica Bouchard (Temple, Maine) in 82nd.

Eastern schools continued their strong week. The University of Massachusetts captured the combined alpine championship, with Boston College second, Brown University fourth, Colby-Sawyer College fifth and PSC tied for sixth. The only western school in the top five was defending champions Sierra Neveda College, which finished third in third. There are 19 schools that have qualified and are participating in the event.

The USCSA National Championships conclude Saturday with the men's slalom. PSC qualified both its men's and women's team for the affair by placing in the top five two weeks ago at the Eastern Regional Championships.

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