Feb. 2, 2013
RED RIVER, N.M. -- Sophomores Mats Rudin Resaland and Anni Nord again led the University of New Mexico Nordic team on Saturday with top-10 finishes, but the 10/10K Freestyle race held at the Enchanted Forest Cross Country Ski and Snowshoe Area in Red River, N.M., proved to be a challenge for the Lobos as both the men's and women's teams placed second to last among the seven-team field. UNM fell back one place in its home Invitational, sitting tied for fifth with Alaska-Anchorage with 350 points.
Utah (457 points), Colorado (430 points) and Denver (403 points) hold on to the top three spots while Montana State (372 points) moved ahead of New Mexico after Saturday's race.
Resaland has led the Lobo men's team and finished in the top 10 in all six Rocky Mountain Intercollegiate Ski Association events this season. The Kongsberg, Norway, native finished seventh in the 10K race with a time of 0:14:35.4. Resaland achieved a career-best second place in Friday's 5K Classical race.
"Yesterday was a good race," Resaland said. "It is a weird feeling skiing at such high altitude, but I tried open the race easy and have some extra power in the end and that worked pretty well. I tried the same today, but maybe I felt the race from yesterday a bit. My legs are a little heavy, but top-10 is okay. It's always my goal to be up there and improve every race until NCAAs."
The Lobos' lead man enjoyed his first UNM home Invitational and found it reminiscent of his home.
"It's really cool," Resaland said. "This ski area has a more local look than some of the other places we've been. It looks a little bit like Norway, so I like it."
Nord again led the women's team, clocking a 30:19.8 to place ninth and earn her third top-10 finish of the season.
"I was a little bit farther back than I wanted to be after the first lap, but the second one was better and I think I caught up with a few people on that lap," Nord said. "I had a similar strategy as yesterday's race, but today was a 10K, so I needed to safe more for the end. I was definitely tired today and feeling yesterday's event, so I'm surprised that I was still in the top 10."
Head coach Fredrik Landstedt had hoped for a better day by UNM.
"Mats and Anni did okay, and overall, had a good weekend," he said. "But we were definitely a little bit back today. It's better to have a bad day here than at the NCAAs. We'll just have to see if we can do some things different and do better next week."
The Nordic team travels to Soldier Hollow, Utah, Feb. 9-10 for the Utah Invitational. The Lobo Alpine team will start the Utes' Invite Feb. 6-7 with the Giant Slalom and Slalom, respectively, in Loveland, Colo., before heading to Red River for the downhill portion of the UNM Invite.
University of New Mexico Invitational - Day 2 (Nordic FS)
NORDIC: UU 457, CU 430, DU 403, MSU 372, UAA 350, UNM 350, WYO 204
MEN: UU 265, CU 202, DU 191, MSU 184, UNM 172, UAA 168, WYO 120
WOMEN: CU 228, DU 212, UU 192, MSU 188, UAA 182, UNM 178, WYO 84
UNM MEN: 7. Mats Rudin Resaland 35 points, (26:00.3); 21. Christian Otto 23 points, (27:57.3); 24. Eivind Odden Solberg 22 points, (29:21.9)
UNM WOMEN: 9. Anni Nord 31 points (30:19.8); 14. Linn Håvelsrud Klaesson 27 points, (30:48.1); 15. Clara Chauvet 26 points (30:57.4)