Nordic men dominate at USCSA National Championship

Brent Hollerud
March 18, 2014

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. - It was a clean sweep for the St. Olaf men's nordic skiing team as they claimed both the team overall and individual titles at the 2014 USCSA National Championships last week at Whiteface Mountain in Lake Placid.

The team championship, thanks to victories in the 8.5K, the 15K and the team relay, is bolstered by junior Jake Brown's first-place finish in the individual competition.

Brown narrowly edged out Scott Johanik (College of St. Scholastica) in a total time tiebreaker after the pair finished one-two in each of the three events. Brown won the 8.5K freestyle with a time of 22:38.71 while Johanik crossed first in the sprint.

Remarkably Brown and Johanik both turned in a first-place 51:17.65 time in the 15K classic which left the two tied in the final standings to set up the tiebreaker scenario.

Fellow Oles Joel Bransky and Nels Thompson finished third and fifth respectively in the individual competition, giving St. Olaf three of the top five finishers for the week.

Bransky finished third in the freestyle and fifth in the sprint, while Thompson found himself in the top ten in each of the freestyle, sprint and classic events.

The trio of Brown, Branksy and Thompson were named to the All-American First Team in the men's nordic team relay.

Cole Hendrickson ended the week 15th place in the overall standings, after coming in 14th in all three events.

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