Steamboat Springs snowboarder races to silver medal at Winter Universiade 2017 | SteamboatToday.com

Steamboat Springs snowboarder races to silver medal at Winter Universiade 2017

Maggie Rose Carrigan cuts around a gate during a 2016 USASA snowboarding event at Howelsen Hill in Steamboat Springs. She went in to win in her division in both the slalom and giant slalom races.

— Maggie Rose Carrigan raced to one of the best finishes of her career Tuesday finishing second in the snowboard parallel slalom at the Winter Universiade 2017 in Kazakhstan.

"It's one of the best finishes of my life," Carrigan said of her second-place finish.

In fact, she collected another top-10 finish in the Alpine snowboarding events with a ninth-place showing in the parallel giant slalom earlier in the week.

After making the qualifying cut, Carrigan found her groove in the knockout runs. In the second matchup, she advanced past the top seed and then she put together two of the best runs of her career in the semifinals.

In the finals, she went head-to-head with Poland's Weronika Biela in a race to determine the parallel slalom title. The two were a fraction of a second apart after the first run, but the Steamboat rider said she pushed for the win in the second run and fell, ending any chance of earning the gold medal.

Carrigan graduated from Steamboat Springs High School in 2015 and is currently a member of the Colorado Mountain College race team. She took a gap year after graduation and battled to find top finishes in several the NorAm and World Cup starts last year.

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This year she is balancing classes at CMC as she continues to pursue her racing career. Her family was thrilled when she called early Tuesday morning to give them the good news from the international event for college racers.

The Winter Universiade 2017 is a multi-sport winter event, which takes place Jan. 28 to Feb. 8 in Almaty, Kazakhstan. The competition follows a similar format to the Winter Olympic games with opening and closing ceremonies and Alpine skiing, biathlon, cross country skiing, curling, figure skating, freestyle skiing, ice hockey, Nordic combined short track speed skating, ski jumping snowboarding and speed skating events held over 12 days.

Carrigan wasn't the only rider with ties to Steamboat who fared well in the race. Her teammate Myles Silverman, who has trained in Steamboat Springs, placed 15th in the men's parallel salom races.

"I want to give a shoutout to Myles Silverman. He had a great competition, and I think we represented the U.S. Team well," Carrigan said. "Kazakhstan felt so safe and was great. It was an awesome experience, and I hope they can get the Olympics someday."

Russia is currently leading the medal count at Winter Universiade with 10 gold, seven silver and three bronze medals. The next closest country is Kazakhstan with eight medals.

Carrigan was the first and only U.S. athlete to win a medal as of Wednesday morning.

To reach John F. Russell, call 970-871-4209, email jrussell@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @Framp1966