Local 'boarders continue dominance


— The men on the U.S. halfpipe team are not the only ones that have been dominating snowboarding circuits.

Snowboarders in the Winter Sports Club have been turning in top results in the Snowboarding Outreach Society Series as they gear up for nationals in March. In two months of competition, the SSWSC is expecting to take more than 20 of the 30 spots the SOS competition allots for nationals.

"(Steamboat) has once again proven that it will dominate the regional spots for national qualification," said Spencer Tamblyn, the SSWSC's head freestyle snowboarding coach.

In the past two weekends, Steamboat has competed in four competitions and taken a total of 23 first places for eight age divisions.

On Saturday and Sunday, Steamboat had top finishes in slopestyle, competing first in Vail and then in Beaver Creek on Sunday. The previous weekend, SSWSC traveled to Vail on Saturday for the boardercross and then to Beaver Creek for the halfpipe on Sunday.

In the older age division, Davis Johnson has been turning in strong performances as he captured two firsts and one second place. His first-place finishes in the 14 to 15 age division came in the halfpipe and slopestyle competitions at Beaver Creek. He placed second after Steamboat's Ryan Loughridge in the slopestyle competition at Vail.

"(Johnson) took a year off last year and really came out here strong this year," Tamblyn said.

Steamboat also had strong performances in the women's 18 to 22 age group. With only a few weeks of practice in Steamboat, Maggie Sullivan finished Sunday's slopestyle event with a first place. And national champion Ashley Berger was able to capture first place in Saturday's slopestyle even with an arm she broke three weeks ago.

Brothers Alex and Grant Glenn have also taken home medals. In the 16 to 17 age group, Alex Glenn placed first in the slopestyle event at Beaver Creek and second in the slopestyle at Vail. For the men's open division, Grant Glenn took first in the slopestyle and second in the halfpipe competition, both at Beaver Creek.

In younger age groups, Kevin Gower took first in all four competitions and Austin Reed followed in second for the 8 and 9 age division. And Steamboat's 10- to 11-year-old boys swept the top three spots in all of the past four competitions with the top finishes from Blake Eddington, Stephan Zittel, Max Erickson.

For the girls' 12 to 13 age group, Emily Robinson took first place in three of the past four competitions.

Although Tamblyn admits his team is growing, the success is not unusual, he said. The SSWSC has been bringing close to 40 riders to competitions that have fields of 80 to 90 snowboarders.

"We just continue to grow. We have done well in the past, but have more kids," Tamblyn said.

The riders have two more SOS competitions before nationals.


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