Dartmouth College’s consistency won them their fourth carnival of the season at the Middlebury Snow Bowl on Feb. 17-18 as the alpine team was able to accumulate 491 points to take first place in their portion. The University of Vermont finished second with 468 points and the home team, Middlebury College, finished third with 419.
Dartmouth also took the overall win with 1,027 points thanks to winning every alpine and nordic portion 0f the weekend aside from the men’s and women’s slalom races. The Big Green has only lost one carnival this season, their home event at the Skiway last weekend.
The Middlebury men were certainly ready for the slalom on Friday as Rob Cone skied well enough to take home the win. Cone finished second in the first run, behind Dartmouth’s Brian McLaughlin. The door was opened for Cone when McLaughlin was not able to complete a tough second run course.
“It’s good to get the win here on the home hill here because I’ve skied the trail a million times, and I know the terrain on the hill, and I know where to carry speed onto the flats and what parts of the course matters, so it means a lot to win here,” Cone said.
Cone finished with a time of 1:34.51. Dartmouth’s Tomas Woolson moved into second place after a strong second run, 0.59 second behind and another Middlebury athlete, Colin Hayes, finished third 0.63 second back.
The University of Vermont’s Paula Moltzan and Laurence St. Germain dominated the women’s slalom for the second week in a row. This week St. Germain was able to come away as the leader with an overall time of 1:36.32. Moltzan finished in second place, 1.10 seconds back and Williams College Eph, Hannah Hunsakerm finished in third, 1.61 seconds behind.
“I am really happy, I had two really solid runs, and last weekend I was first [after first run], and I ended up second, so it feels good to have two good runs and stay in first. We have a really strong field in slalom, so it feels good to win,” St. Germain said.
Every year at the Middlebury Carnival, busloads of students show up for the latter half of the giant slalom race, and it gets rowdy as they cheer on the Panthers, making sure that the noise is heard virtually throughout the race course. The fans must have been ecstatic as Caroline Bartlett, a sophomore at Middlebury, finished the second run to hold her lead.
Bartlett won with a time of 2:06.30. Moltzan took second place again on Saturday, 0.34 seconds back and two Dartmouth women, Stephanie Currie and Kelly Moore tied for third, 0.76 seconds back.
Bartlett said that she was prepared coming down the course. She knew that she was going to be able to hear the crowd, something that doesn’t happen at any other Carnival, and she was happy to share the win classmates and friends.
“You can hear it, you can see it, it looks like you’re skiing into a wall of people,” Bartlett said of the crowds. “The day went as best as I could ask for,” she added. The Snow Bowl was not her favorite hill but “once you get used to the rolls,” it becomes fun.
The Dartmouth men led their team to victory on Saturday putting three skiers in the top five. McLaughlin led once again after the first run and on Saturday, he was able to finish the day on top with a time of 2:01.38. Cone finished second, 0.10 seconds behind and Dartmouth’s Dylan Brooks finished third, 0.73 seconds back.
“Really solid skiing first run, second run was pretty rough, and I had some weird snow because of the warmth, but I just had to fight and make it down,” McLaughlin said.
At the end of the race most of the EISA racers congregated at the top of the course for a ski out in honor of Middlebury’s former teammate Murphy Roberts, who passed away in 2016. The moment came about organically, said Middlebury Head Coach Steve Bartlett. There was supposed to be a ceremony at the top of the hill where the team had placed a sign, but it turned into something much bigger on its own.
“The Middlebury Carnival was like Christmas to Murphy,” Bartlett said. “Every year he was so fired up for the Carnival. He just had so much team spirit, so for everybody to try to remember him that way by showing this level of enthusiasm and even beyond the Middlebury kids, it’s just awesome.”
Complete results can be found here.