FILE UNDER -- Alpine

Women’s NorAms: Lustenberger wins GS; Kelleher leads deep American attack

Women’s NorAms: Lustenberger wins GS; Kelleher leads deep American attackCanada’s Christina Lustenberger skied two winning runs to take gold at the second CIBC Coupe NorAm GS in Mont-Sainte-Anne, Quebec on Wednesday. But while the race belonged to Lustenberger, the day belonged to the American women, who admirably rebounded from the carnage of Tuesday’s second-run of GS, stealing seven of the top-eight spots on Wednesday.

An exuberant Keely Kelleher spearheaded the American attack with a second-place finish. ‘I’ve been struggling to find a way to go for it at races’ said Kelleher, ‘but I was really aggressive today, and it felt awesome.’

Kelleher is no stranger to success on the NorAm and Europa Cup circuits, but she suffered a severely broken leg two years ago, and this marks her first full season back in action. ‘For the first time in a long time, I felt confident today’ said Kelleher of her performance at Mont-Sainte-Anne.

Tuesday’s winner, Kristen Mielke, again landed on the podium with a third-place finish, and U.S. Ski Teamers Megan McJames, Caitlin Ciccone and Chelsea Marshall finished fourth, fifth and sixth, respectively. McJames and Marshall also earned top-junior honors.

‘Keely was incredibly aggressive’ said U.S. Ski Team coach John Hale, ‘and right down through [Jenny] Lathrop and [Julia] Littman, we had a great day.’

Indeed, Kelleher’s palpable enthusiasm seemed to emanate from her team’s success, rather than from her individual result. ‘We’re just psyched about the dynamics of our team’ gushed Kelleher, ‘Our coaches are doing an awesome job, we always have a good time, and more than anything – we all just love to ski.’

A pair of NCAA competitors rounded out the top 15, as Middlebury College’s Megan Hughes finished 13th, and Jamie Kingsbury of UVM finished 15th.

CIBC Coupe NorAm GS
Jan. 4, 2006

1 (14) LUSTENBERGER Christina [CAN] – SR 1:04.96 1:09.12 2:14.08
2 (19) KELLEHER Keely Blair [USA] – SR 1:05.77 1:09.49 2:15.26
3 (4) MIELKE Kristen [USA] – SR 1:06.14 1:10.67 2:16.81
4 (3) MCJAMES Megan [USA] – J1 1:06.85 1:10.35 2:17.20
5 (8) CICCONE Caitlin [USA] – SR 1:06.44 1:10.84 2:17.28
6 (16) MARSHALL Chelsea [USA] – J1 1:07.02 1:10.36 2:17.38
7 (6) LATHROP Jenny T [USA] – SR 1:06.65 1:10.89 2:17.54
8 (13) LITTMAN Julia [USA] – SR 1:07.29 1:10.60 2:17.89
9 (25) RYLEY Megan [CAN] – J1 1:06.89 1:11.04 2:17.93
10 (5) NJEIM Chirine [LIB] – SR 1:06.96 1:10.97 2:17.9

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