March 8, 2012
BOZEMAN, Mont. - The University of New Mexico ski team moved up a spot to eighth place after the alpine teams competed in the giant slalom on day two of the NCAA Championships.
The Lobo men showed up in a huge way on the slopes today, placing two skiers in the top 10. Utah was the only other RMISA school to have two skiers place in the top 10 in the race. Armin Triendl, UNM's and RMISA's top alpine skier in 2012, snagged himself a fifth-place finish and first-team All-American nod. Triendl's teammate Chris Acosta cashed in on his third-straight All-America award (second-team) in his third-straight season (he was first team last year and second team in 2010) after placing 10th in the giant slalom race. Freshman Michael Bansmer rounded out the men's scoring after finishing in 34th.
"Having Chris and Armin get All-American honors is makes for definitely a good day," head alpine coach Tyler Shepherd said. "The funny thing is although it's a good day; it is also a frustrating day for some of our skiers. Armin was in position to get on the podium but made a mistake that cost him some critical time, bumping him down to fifth place. Earning All-American is certainly a great accomplishment and I know they are happy and I'm happy for them."
Acosta is quite possibly the most accomplished skier on UNM' squad and he proved why today. He has garnered All-American honors every year he has attended UNM, freshman-junior seasons.
"The last couple of weeks Chris has just been relaxed," Shepherd said. "He has come into himself; having been here and done this before makes him able to go out and shut his mind off and go all out. "
On the women's side, veterans Kate Williams and Stefanie Demetz both finished just outside of earning All-America honors, as the two placed 12th and 13th, respectively. Mary Rachel Hostetter rounded out the women's scoring after placing 30th.
"Kate Williams had an awesome first run and was setting herself up for a very nice overall finish in terms of possibly earning All-American status, but she just had some mistakes on the second run. She was frustrated with that, but overall we are very happy with her finish.
"Stefanie had some issues with her first run, but came back in her second run with fire in her belly," Shepherd said. "She actually went from 24th to end up finishing 13th. She is very hard on herself because she knows she can be a top-5 skier."
Post race, Shepherd was supremely confident in his group and couldn't wait for the slalom race to come Saturday.
"Without question all of our skiers are capable of finishing on the front page in the top 15," Shepherd said. "That is really what I am after overall as a team. We had a good day today, but I think we can knock out of the park and have all of them on the front page on Saturday."
The NCAA Championships continue tomorrow with the Nordic men's and women's classical races set to take place at 9 and 11 a.m. MT, respectively, the races can be streamed live on NCAA.com and by clicking here.