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Utes skiers finish in second place at NCAAs

Deseret News

Published: Saturday, March 10 2012 9:58 p.m. MST

BOZEMAN, Mont. — Senior Torjus Krogdahl finished fourth in the men's slalom race as the University of Utah ski team earned a second-place finish at the NCAA Championships on Saturday at the Bridger Bowl.

The Utes tallied 671 points in the team standings, edging reigning national champion Colorado for runner-up honors by a single point. Utah earned second place at the NCAA Championships for the second straight year and the eighth time since the sport went co-ed in 1989. The Utes have finished second 14 times at the national meet since 1954.

"It was certainly a hard-fought championship that came down to the last event," Utah Director of Skiing Kevin Sweeney said. "We were charging as hard as we possible today, which perhaps forced a few errors, but I never second-guessed the motivation and desire. We earned the silver medal today after a week of outstanding efforts, sportsmanship and pure awesome skiing in every discipline. It has been an incredibly memorable season on all fronts. It is with much that pride we bring the trophy back to the U! Go Utes!"

Utah totaled 65 points in the men's slalom race as Krogdahl placed fourth to lead the way for the Utes. This was Krogdahl's third time in the top five at the NCAA Championships after a second-place in the slalom at the 2009 meet and a fifth-place effort tin 2010. He has now earned All-American honors five times over his career.

"Today was a tough day with the warm temperatures," Krogdahl said. "Our team put forth its best effort and we are all proud to call ourselves Utes. I am happy to earn First-Team All-American honors in my last race as a Ute."

Senior Nick Cohee followed in 16th, which was his 11th top-20 effort of the year and the 36th of his career, while junior Ryan Wilson was disqualified during his second run of the day.

In the women's slalom race, three Utes were among the top 15. Utah junior Anna Kocken led the way for the Utes with a 10th-place effort to earn her second straight Second-Team All-American honor. Kocken, a native of Jarpen, Sweden, has finished 10th or better in her last five races and a total of 10 times this season. She is now a four-time All-American and has placed 10th or better 19 times over her career.

"Today was rough, we were 1,2,3 going into the second run, so we are a bit disappointed with how it went today," Kocken said. "However, being the second-best team in the country isn't too bad and we are just motivated to work even harder to win this thing next year."

Senior Tii-Maria Romar followed Kocken with a 12th-place effort. She has finished 20th or better 12 times this season and in 24 races over her career. The Mustasaari, Finland finished her Utah career as a three-time All-American.

Sophomore Julie Bordeau closed out the Utah effort on the day with a 14th-place finish. She has placed 20th or better in 15 races during her career with the Utes.

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