MARQUETTE, Mich. –The Northern Michigan University men’s Nordic skiing team concluded the 2009-10 season at the NCAA Skiing Championships.
The Wildcats started the season at the Michigan Tech Challenge. On the first day of the event, NMU had a team score of 17 points as they took the team title. Four ‘Cats finished in the top 10 with George Cartwright leading the way in third with a time of 30:36.3 as Tim Cook’s time of 30:58.1 was good for fifth place. Chris Bowler was the next ‘Cat to finish in seventh (31:52.9) while Tom McFadden was 10th (32:22.6). The second day however saw NMU finish the competition in second with 16 points. Bowler finished the 10K classic race in third place with a time of 32:22.6 with three other ‘Cats placing in the top 10. Cartwright’s time of 33:26.3 was good for fifth place, Kevin Cutts had an eighth place showing (33:40.2) while Cook finished the race in 10th (34:17.8).
NMU would then compete at the 2010 Conoco Phillips U.S. Cross Country Championships. The first day of competition, Cartwright was the team leader for the ‘Cats in the sprint freestyle event with a 28th place showing (3:02.71). Cutts would be next with a time 3:02.92 good for 33rd with Ben Hugus (3:08.94) and Bowler (3:10.68) i56th and 62nd respectively. The second day of competition saw Cartwright leading the charge once again for NMU in the 15K freestyle event. He finished 33rd with a time of 40:57.3 as Cutts was the next ‘Cat to cross the finish line with a time of 41:31.3 for 43rd. Cook was the next NMU skier at 56th (42.28.8). The final day of the event, Cutts led the team in the 30K mass start classic with a 35th place showing ( 1:43:07) as Cook finished the classic 44th (1:45:59.8). Cutts would also lead the ‘Cats in the final event, the classic sprint. His time of 3:28.33 placed him 31st while Cartwright finished 33rd (3:29.10), Hugus 42nd (3:30.70) and Bowler f 52nd (3:34.47) rounded out the ‘Cats in the race.
At the SuperTour event in Minneapolis, Cook led NMU in the senior men’s race placing 19th as he covered the course with a time of 24:36.2. Cutts was the next ‘Cat to finish 27th (25:21.6). With a time of 23:51.6, Cartwright took home the Olympic junior 10K freestyle race. Bowler was next in fourth (25:18.7). The second day of the event, Cutts led the way for NMU placing 12th in the 15K classic race with a time of 31:28.9 followed by Cartwright’s 13th (39:24.3). The ‘Cats had a third place showing in the event with 125 points, however, they finished the two-day event in first place with 266 points.
As the ‘Cats competed at the Telemark SuperTour race, they took the event on the first day in the 10K classic race. Three NMU skiers finished in the top six with Cartwright finishing third with a time of 30:28.1 followed by Bowler in fourth (30:29.0) along with Cutts sixth (31:04.4). The second day of the event the ‘Cats finished in second as a team in the 15K freestyle race with 74 points while Michigan Tech won the team title by three points (77 points). The overall result in the event was another nail bitter for the ‘Cats as they placed second with 154 points to Michigan Tech’s 155 points. With an overall combined team score with the women’s team of 320 points, the ‘Cats took team honors. Cartwright was the leader for NMU finishing in second (39:41.7) as teammate Cook had an eighth place showing with a time of 40:52.9.
On the first day of the Central Collegiate Ski Association (CCSA) Championships, the ‘Cats took second in the 10K classic with 77 points while Michigan Tech claimed the team title with 83 points. Cartwright paced the ‘Cats with a second (27:09.9) followed by Cutts sixth (27:42.5). The ‘Cats 73 points in the 20K freestyle on the second day saw them take the team title edging out Michigan Tech’s 72 points. Cutts led NMU in the freestyle race coming in third with a time of 50:56.4 while Cartwright was the next ‘Cat to cross the finish line in seventh place (51:18.0). For the weekend, the ‘Cats had a second place showing as a team in both the freestyle and classic races with 150 points. Michigan Tech took the team title with 155 points.
The NCAA Central Regional Cross Country Skiing Championships saw two of three ‘Cats finish in the top three in the 10K classic race. The ‘Cats won the team title with 80 points while the Huskies of Michigan Tech took second with 76. Bowler led the ‘Cats with a second (29:58.9), Cartwright third (29:59.2) and Cutts eighth (30:32.4). On day two of the championships, the ‘Cats had three skiers finishing the 15K freestyle in the top seven. NMU claimed the race and took team honors by scoring 79 points as a team and 159 points for the two-day event (classic and freestyle). Cartwright won the freestyle race covering the course with a time of 39:42.8 edging the second place finisher by 15 seconds. Also finishing in the top 10 was Bowler (40:06.6) sixth and Cutts seventh (40:06.9).
The ‘Cats closed out the season at the NCAA Skiing Championships as Cutts led the way in the 10K classic race. The ‘Cat finished the race in 26th with a time of 31:01.1 while as a team, NMU finished the first day of the championships in 12th place with 88 points. It was on the second day that saw three ‘Cats competing in the 20K freestyle race. Cartwright led NMU finishing 30th covering the course in 51:43.4 while Bowler (52:18.1) and Cutts (54:19.5) finished the race in 34th and 38th respectively. As a team the ‘Cats finished in 14th place with 166 points.
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Story by Stanley Jefferson
Sports Information Director