Nordic skiing opened its season at the Bates Carnival, hosted at Black Mountain in Rumford, Maine, finishing 11th out of the 14 invited teams. The team then travelled to Stowe, Vermont to participate in the University of Vermont Carnival, where it finished tenth out of 13 teams.
“Race-day energy varies from person to person,” Head Coach Nathan Alsobrook said. “Some are super relaxed, while others let the nerves show a bit.

“As a group, this crew does a great job of staying positive and bringing the enthusiasm every weekend,” he added. “It’s a young team, though, and one thing we’re working on is staying focused and nailing down the details on race morning—course inspection, warmups, time management, etc.”

At the Bates Carnival, the Polar Bears finished eigth in both the men’s 20K classic and the women’s 5K freestyle.

“The boys team had a particularly exciting performance at the Bates Carnival, beating both our Maine rivals, Colby and Bates,” said Hannah Miller ’17.

Miller recorded the top individual finish for Bowdoin, recording a personal best with her ninth-place finish in the 5K race and placing as Bowdoin’s top skier in the 15K classic. 
“Hannah Miller is our top skier, and she had a fantastic race in the Bates 5K freestyle,” Alsobook said. “She had been sick earlier in the week and was feeling pretty drained, but she really dug deep to put up a fantastic finish.”

For the men, Jackson Bloch ’15 was Bowdoin’s top finisher in the 20K race, placing 22nd with Tyler DeAngelis ’15 following closely behind in 29th place. Malcom Groves ’17 was the top finisher in the 10K freestyle, placing 35th.

“Jackson Bloch and Tyler DeAngelis were both outstanding in the Bates 20K classic,” Alsobrook said. ”They’re both seniors and this race was years of hard work paying off. Malcolm Groves has made a big jump forward this year—he’s come a long way in the past few months.”
During the UVM Carnival, Bloch was once again the Bowdoin men’s top finisher, placing 22nd in the 10K freestyle and 33rd in the 15K classic race. DeAngelis finished closely behind Bloch once more in the 15K race, finishing 42nd while Groves finished 42nd in the 10K race.

The Polar Bear women also performed well, with Miller once again finishing first for Bowdoin by placing 23rd in the 5K freestyle and finishing 28th in the 10K classic. Ellen Hands ’18 was Bowdoin’s second-best finisher in the 5K, finishing 50th, while Shelby Aseltine ’15 served as the next-best Bowdoin performer in the 10K finishing 45th.

“The carnival season is always nice because it provides a lot of bonding time between all the racing, long van rides and morning practices,” said Miller. “The nordic team is small and a tight group of people and I’m definitely thoroughly enjoying spending nearly every waking hour, for at least the next five weeks, with them.”

“We’ve had some fantastic individual efforts in these first couple weeks,” Alsobrook added.  “At the same time, I don’t think we’ve skied up to our potential yet.”

“We’ll be working on the little things to get better, such as skiing transitions aggressively, staying calm and relaxed before races, and bringing a little extra focus to our preparation all week long.”

The Polar Bears return to action next weekend at the St. Michael’s Carnival hosted at Sleepy Hollow in Huntington, Vt.