Denver’s Joensuu, Utah’s Bergstroem Win Freestyle Sprint at U.S. Cross Country Championship

Friday, January 5, 2018 • by Brooke Fredrickson, RMSIA

ANCHORAGE, Alaska—Denver’s Jasmi Joensuu and Utah’s Martin Bergstroem won the women’s and men’s freestyle sprints at the U.S. Cross Country Championships on Friday afternoon.

In the women’s race, it was Joensuu’s first career victory. Colorado’s Petra Hyncicova led three Buff skiers in the top 10 with Christina Rolandsen placing sixth and Hedda Baangman finishing seventh. Alaska-Anchorage also had three skiers in the top 10, led by third-place Hailey Swirbul, followed by fifth-place Casey Wright and ninth-place Hannah Rudd. Also in the top 10 was Montana State’s Johanna Taliharm in fourth, Denver’s Kristine Karsrud in eighth and New Mexico’s Brenna Egan in 10th.

For the men, it was Bergstroem’s third career victory for Utah. The Utes had three skiers in the top six as Haakon Hjelstuen finished fifth with Logan Diekmann in sixth. Denver took the other two podium spots with Dag Trolleboe in second and Eivind Kvaale in third, and had four skiers total in the top 10, followed by Nicholas Sweeney in eighth and Lars Hannah in 10th. Colorado’s Alvar Johannes Alev finished fourth with Petter Reistad seventh. Montana State’s Erik Axelsson finished ninth.

The U.S. Cross Country Championship races are being held independent of a team meet and races are not scored, but results will be used for NCAA qualification. RMISA results were based on the qualification races.

In the final overall heat, Joensuu placed second while Hyncicova finished third in the women’s race. Kvaale finished sixth in the overall men’s race.

The alpine teams get underway on Saturday, Jan. 6, at Big Sky Resort in Montana with the RMISA giant slalom alpine qualifier, followed by the Montana State Invitational slalom and giant slalom races from Jan. 7-8. Races can be followed at http://ussalivetiming.com/.

The Nordic teams are back on snow next weekend at the Montana State Invitational, Jan. 13-14.

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