STOWE, Vt. – Sam Coffey (Snowmass, Colo.) notched a career-best second place finish to ignite a team victory in the men's giant slalom as the University of New Hampshire skiing team took second place during Friday's opening day of the Vermont Carnival at Mt. Mansfield Ski and Snowboard Club.
UVM, which is playing host to the first carnival of the EISA season, leads with 250 points, followed by UNH, which has 200. Middlebury College (193 points) is in third place, followed by Dartmouth (189).
Coffey, a two-time NCAA qualifier and 2011 All-America Second-Team skier, followed up an initial run of 59.45 seconds with a second time of 1 minute, 3.54 seconds for a combined total of 2:02.99, just .27 seconds behind race winner David Donaldson of Middlebury College. Alpine captain Taylor Vest-Burton (Breckenridge, Colo.) earned fifth place in a combined time of 2:03.92, and Kris Hopkins (North Andover, Mass.), a Mt. Mansfield Ski Club product, registered a career-best sixth place in 2:04.00.
Catherine Blanchard (Eastman, Quebec), a two-time NCAA Championship competitor, was the top 'Cat on the women's side with a time of 2:08.84 for seventh place. Caroline Barry (Pittsfield, Mass.), a transfer from St. Lawrence, crossed the finish line in a combined 2:10.55 for 21st place, and Marie-Elaine Lepine (Mont-Tremblant, Quebec), last season's team MVP, placed 30th in 2:12.92.
Alpine skiing at the Vermont Carnival concludes with the men's and women's slalom races Saturday at Mt. Mansfield. For more information on the UNH skiing team, visit www.unhwildcats.com or www.unhskiing.com.