Stell an all-American skier

Posted: Friday, March 09, 2001

Kevin Stell of Juneau earned all-American honors after finishing fourth in Thursday's giant slalom race at the NCAA Skiing Championships in Ripton, Va.

Stell was one of three University of Colorado skiers to place in the top-seven in the men's GS race, trailing teammate Chad Wolk in second place and finishing ahead of fellow Buffalo Josh Nolting, who tied for seventh place. John Minahan of the University of Vermont won the race, with his teammate Matthew Knittle taking third. Skiers finishing among the top 10 in a race earn all-American honors.

Minahan's winning time for the two-run race was 1 minute, 59.52 seconds. Wolk posted a time of 2:00.34, Knittle came in at 2:00.77 and Stell's time was 2:00.84. Wolk led after the first run, but made a tactical error that allowed Minahan to claim the title. Stell was fourth after the first run.

"Chad was putting together a great second run, but he made a costly mistake near the end that cost him some time," Colorado coach Richard Rokos said in a press release from the school. "Kevin had a solid two runs, and skied very consistent, very smart, as did Josh. They didn't ski conservative by any means, they just took very calculated and smart risks and it paid off."

In the women's giant slalom race, Erica MacConnell of Vermont claimed the victory in 2:06.32, followed by teammate Alexandra Krebs in 2:06.43. Cecilie Hagen Larsen of defending NCAA champion Denver University took third place in 2:06.47, followed by Erika Hansson of the University of Alaska Anchorage in 2:07.08.

In the team standings, Denver maintained the lead it grabbed after Wednesday's first day of nordic events. The Pioneers have 366 gross points after two days of competition, followed by Utah with 306.5 points, Colorado with 298.5, Vermont with 295 and New Mexico with 231.5 for fifth place. UAA is 10th with 155 points and UA Fairbanks is 16th with 37.

The meet continues with another nordic race today, followed by a slalom race on Saturday when Stell will ski again.

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