Alpine Ski Team Wins at Regionals

Wednesday, February 29 2012

MOSCOW, Idaho -- The University of Idaho Men’s Alpine Team and one member of the Women’s Alpine Team qualified for national collegiate finals at the US Collegiate Ski and Snowboard Association Western Region Championship Feb. 23-25 in Steamboat Springs, Colo.

Brothers Erik and Drew Anderson of Sandpoint, Idaho, Nick Howell of Pocatello, Idaho, Jeff Jacka of Federal Way, Wash. and Travis Soderquist, of Idaho Falls, Idaho, powered their way to third place amongst eligible teams in the slalom and grand slalom events.

Lindsey Anderson, sister to Erik and Drew, qualified for nationals as an individual competitor by winning the giant slalom event and finishing third in the slalom. Lindsay has a strong chance for an individual national title.

The University of Idaho hasn’t beaten other western powerhouse teams like University of Oregon, University of Washington, Colorado State and College of Idaho since 2008 when the women’s team qualified. The win is even more notable given the team must follow NCAA rules, and it must raise its own support rather than receive university athletic funding.

“I am very proud of our teams,” said Coach Jerry McMurtry. “They have represented the university well through the four Northwest conference races and at the Western regional championships in Colorado. They are dedicated students and athletes. This team is very deserving of the opportunity to race for a national championship."

Overall the men’s team took fourth in the slalom and fifth in the grand slalom. The women’s team took 13th and 11th respectively. The key challenge for the women was a reduced roster with only three women able to compete because of school commitments.

The national championships will be in Sunday River, Maine, March 5-10. The team is currently working to raise approximately $4,500 needed for entry fees and transportation.

“In my 17 years at U-Idaho as coach, the U-Idaho has not had this strong of a team,” said McMurtry. “We have strength, depth and dedication that I have not seen at any of the other universities where I have coached. I am so proud to have this team of athletes represent U-Idaho at the National Championships."
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About the University of Idaho
Founded in 1889, the University of Idaho is the state’s land-grant institution and its principal graduate education and research university, bringing insight and innovation to the state, the nation and the world. University researchers attract nearly $100 million in research grants and contracts each year. The University of Idaho is classified by the prestigious Carnegie Foundation as high research activity. The student population of 12,000 includes first-generation college students and ethnically diverse scholars, who select from more than 130 degree options in the colleges of Agricultural and Life Sciences; Art and Architecture; Business and Economics; Education; Engineering; Law; Letters, Arts and Social Sciences; Natural Resources; and Science. The university also is charged with the statewide mission for medical education through the WWAMI program. The university combines the strength of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities and focuses on helping students to succeed and become leaders. It is home to the Vandals, and competes in the Western Athletic Conference. For more information, visit