MIDDLEBURY, Vt. --
Veronique Archambault-Leger (Verdun, Quebec) raced
to first place and Marie-Elaine Lepine
(Mont-Tremblant, Quebec) finished third in the women's slalom to
lead the University of New Hampshire ski team to a fourth-place
finish following the first day of competition at the Eastern
Intercollegiate Ski Association Championships on Saturday.
Led by those two Wildcats who finished on the podium, the UNH alpine squad recorded the highest team score in the women's slalom with 124 points. New Hampshire compiled a total of 359 points and is behind Dartmouth College (409 points), host Middlebury College (384) and the University of Vermont (364) in the 17-team event.
Archambault-Leger was one of only two skiers to record a sub-48 second second run to vault from sixth place to first place at Snow Bowl. She completed the first run in 47.78 and followed that with a mark of 47.97 for an aggregate time of 1:35.75. Lepine, who was seventh following her first-run time of 47.89, climbed to third place overall at 1:36.35 on the strength of a second run of 48.46.
Catherine Blanchard (Eastman, Quebec) was one of three other UNH alpine skiers to record a top-10 finish in the slalom. She was timed in 1:37.00 -- her individual runs were 47.53 and 49.47 -- to complete UNH's scoring in the women's slalom at 10th place.
Paul Atkinson (Toronto, Ontario), who recorded a pair of top-5 finishes last week at the Williams Winter Carnival, recorded the third-fastest time in the men's slalom at 1:34.04; he raced to a time of 47.32 in the opening run and 46.72 in the second. Willie Ford (Plymouth, N.H.) was timed in 1:34.54 to earn sixth place; he completed the first run in 48.28 and followed that with a mark of 46.26.
Taylor Burton (Breckenridge, Colo.) rounded out New Hampshire's scoring in the men's slalom in 12th place. His individual runs of 50.36 and 45.79 combined to produce a total of 1:36.15.
The alpine squad had two other skiers in the top 20, both in the women's slalom. Alex Norden (Eaton, N.H.) finished 16th overall in 1:37.73 and Aileen Farrell (Ottawa, Ontario) was 20th in 1:38.22.
Danielle Baron (Gilford, N.H.) was the top 'Cat in the Nordic classic races. She completed the 5K women's course at Rikert in 20 minutes, 3.4 seconds to finish in 17th place. Abigail Taylor (Pittsford, N.Y.) crossed the finish line in 20:15.2 for 25th place and Anya Caldwell Bean (Wolfeboro, N.H.) was timed in 20:26.4 for 30th place.
In the men's 10K classic, Michael Lessard (Greene, Maine) was the 18th skier to cross the finish line and was timed at 34:00.3. Dylan McGuffin (Northfield, N.H.) tallied the 21st fastest time of the day at 34:10.1 and Erik Lindgren (Pitea, Sweden) completed the scoring in 24th place with a time of 34:20.1.
The EISA Championships conclude Sunday with the giant slalom at Snow Bowl and the mass free start raced at Rikert.