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PSU Ski Teams open season with sweep of giant slalom

Ryberg and Spear lead Panthers to victory at Sunapee

            SUNAPEE, N.H. – The Plymouth State University ski teams opened the season with a bang Friday at Mount Sunapee, sweeping the team standings and producing the individual champion in both the men’s and women’s giant slalom races on day one of the Colby-Sawyer Winter Carnival.

            The Panther men had the top two finishers and four of the top 10 among the 73 racers, leading the team to more than a five-second margin over runner-up Boston College and the field of nine teams.  The PSU women had the champion and three top-10 finishers among 76 skiers to earn a nearly six-second victory over Colby-Sawyer College and a field of 10 schools.  The races marked a very successful debut for PSU head coach Andrew Gannon.

Martina Ryberg Parker Spear
Ryberg Spear

            Leading the way for the Panthers were sophomores Martina Ryberg (Stockholm, Sweden) and Parker Spear (Sodus Point, N.Y./Sodus Central), who were the overall winners of the races.  Ryberg outraced the women’s field to capture her seventh career victory, while Spear was the fastest skier on the course for the first time in his career.

            Sophomore Chris Beadon (Ridgefield, Conn./Stratton Mountain School) finished runner-up in the men’s race, winning the first run and winding up less than a second behind Spear for the two runs.  Senior Peter Ostroski (Intervale, N.H./Kennett) was not far behind in seventh place, extending his remarkable streak of finishing in the top eight in all 31 regular season races in his career.  Senior Travis Nevins (Henniker, N.H./John Stark) placed 10th to give the Panthers four of the top 10, and junior Tom Sampson (Plymouth, N.H./Plymouth Regional/Waterville Valley) rounded out the PSU scorers in 14th place.

            Joining Ryberg in the top 10 for the Panther women were freshman Marley Pawlak (West Dover, Vt./Stratton Mountain School),who placed seventh in her collegiate debut, and junior Katherine Goller (Williston, Vt./Champlain Union), who crossed the finish line in ninth place.  Junior Kait Pawlak (North Windham, Vt./Green Mountain Union) also finished a strong 15th to complete the PSU scoring.

            The Colby-Sawyer Carnival continues Saturday at Sunapee with another giant slalom race for both men and women. 

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