Wildcats Sweep Team Titles at MTU Races

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HOUGHTON, Mich. (WLUC) — Northern Michigan University Nordic Skiing took the team title in all four races for the second consecutive weekend and both individual crowns in men's races at the MTU CXC Cup Races hosted by Michigan Technological University at the Tech Trails.

MEN'S CLASSIC
Sophomore Kjetil Baanerud (Oslo, Norway) defeated the field in Saturday's 10-kilometer classic race. He finished with a time of 26 minutes, 25.80 seconds in the victory with four more Wildcats following right behind Baanerud.

Sweeping the top-five individual spots, junior Zak Ketterson (Bloomington, Minnesota) and senior Ian Torchia (Rochester, Minnesota) turned in top-three performances. Ketterson finished with a time of 26:30.60 while Torchia crossed the finish line in 26:33.80. Rounding out the top-five finishers were junior Mathias Aas-Rolid (Redalen, Norway) with a time of 27:05.50 and senior Leo Hipp (Forest Lake, Minnesota) with a time of 27:21.40.

WOMEN'S CLASSIC
Leading the way for NMU in the women's 5-kilometer classic race was senior Nicole Schneider (Plymouth, Minnesota). She was the second-fastest collegiate skier in the field with a time of 15:57.00 and a third-place finish overall. Right behind her was freshman Nadine Matter (Engelberg, Switzerland) in fourth with a time of 16:06.90. The final scorer for the Wildcats was sophomore Julie Ensrud (Saltnes, Norway) who finished eighth in 16.16.50.

MEN'S FREESTYLE
It was Ketterson who defeated the field on Sunday for a victory in the 10-kilometer freestyle race. It was the third individual victory for Ketterson in the first four races of the season. He crossed the finish line in 25:29.10 to narrowly defeat Torchia who was runner-up with a time of 25:30.30. Helping the Wildcats sweep the top three spots was Aas-Rolid with a time of 26:08.80.

WOMEN'S FREESTYLE
Half a second separated Schneider from the top spot in the 10-kilometer freestyle race on Sunday as she finished second with a time of 30:09.70. She was again the second-fastest collegiate skier and led three Wildcats to finish in the top-five. Ensrud placed third with a time of 30:14.60 while freshman Abigail Jarzin (Green Bay, Wisconsin) was fourth with a time of 30:16.60.

TEAM RESULTS
NMU took the team crown in all four races including a perfect score in both the men's classic and men's freestyle races. The women finished with 100 points on Saturday to take the top spot and led the way with 102 points on Sunday.

OTHER RESULTS
Sarah Bezdicek | 5K Classic | 16:27.60 | 11th
10K Freestyle | 31:19.80 | 9th
Katerina Hyncicova | 5K Classic | 16:36.20 | 14th
10K Freestyle | 33:09.80 | 19th
Abigail Jarzin | 5K Classic | 16:27.90 | 12th
Xavier Mansfield | 10K Classic | 27:51.50 | 12th
Nadine Matter | 10K Freestyle | 23:25.90 | 14th
Sophie McDonald | 5K Classic | 16:22.30 | 9th
10K Freestyle | 30:17.90 | 8th
Lars Soensterud | 10K Classic | 27:41.70 | 10th
Daniel Streinz | 10K Classic | 27:25.90 | 7th

NEXT UP
After the holidays, the Wildcats will travel to Craftsbury, Vermont for the U.S. Outdoor Nationals. The event will take place January 3-8 at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center.