Wednesday, January 30th
HANOVER, N.H. --- The Dartmouth ski team is off an running.
Carrying momentum from their first national title in thirty years, the Big Green has won this seasons first two Carnivals, with the women's nordic team leading the charge.
"We're in an enviable position of having so many good skiers that they're pushing each other.", says Dartmouth Director of Skiing Cami Thompson.
At the top of the heap is a quartet of Vermonters...senior All-American Susan Dunklee of Barton...senior All-American Elsa Sargent of Orleans...junior Hannah Dreissigacker of Morrisville, a returning NCAA All-East selection...and Elsa's sister, freshman Ida Sargent. In four races, no one in this fantastic four has finished worse than ninth.
"One week one of us does well, the next week the next one does well. Overall, having each other has helped us to go to the next level.", says Dunklee.
"It's not just pushing us, it's keeping us going. Especially on the long workouts. The person behind you or the person in front of you keeps you going.", adds Dreissigacker.
The women are very close. They grew up skiing together at the Craftsbury ski club, moved on to successful careers, winning multiple state championships at different high schools and are now back together, their Green Mountain pride burning bright on the other side of the Connecticut River.
"We have so much fun together and there definitely is a lot of Vermont state pride among us.", says Ida Sargent.
Ida has been the star of the early season. In four races, the freshman has won twice and finished second twice.
"For me, it's been super to be able to come into college and have this group, this family to be a part of."
"I feel like I'm more excited when she wins then when I win, which is different from high school or when we were growing up." adds big sister Elsa. "Now we're really supportive of each other and it's really fun to be racing together this year."
Now their sights are set on two much anticipated events, the carnival's this weekend at UVM and next weekend at Dartmouth.
"These next Carnival's are when everybody starts to pick up speed and the competition gets a lot tougher, so we're looking forward to it.", says Elsa.
And looking forward to another finish at the top.
--- Mike McCune
PO Box 4508