Northern Michigan University’s Nicole Schneider picks up women’s national junior ski title

Nicole Schneider

FAIRBANKS, Alaska — The cross country skiing teams from Northern Michigan University wrapped up a week at the U.S. Distance Championships on a high note with several high finishes on Sunday.

Nicole Schneider won the 13.3-kilometer women’s junior freestyle, while fellow Wildcat Adam Martin picked up his second men’s fifth-place finish in the 50K freestyle.

Schneider clocked 38 minutes, 22.5 seconds in her event, while Martin came in at 2:24:13.19.

In the 30K women’s freestyle, Northern had four skiers crack the top 20 — Vivian Hett was 15th in 1:30:33.7, Caroline Brisbois 16th in 1:31:18.9, Kristen Bourne 18th in 1:32:01.1 and Sophie McDonald 19th in 1:32:14.2. They were also the first four collegians to cross the line.

In the men’s junior 20K freestyle, NMU’s Lars Sonsterud was third in 56:08.5, Zak Ketterson fourth in 56:36.9.

Adam Martin

Meanwhile in the men’s 50K freestyle, the Wildcats’ Fredrik Schwencke was 16th in 2:32:44.6 and Sam Elfstrom 20th in 2:36:41.2 to join Martin.

On Friday, Brisbois, Ketterson, Schneider and Schwencke took 10th in the mixed relay in 55:21.9.

On Wednesday, the Wildcats participated in freestyle sprint races. Sonsterud reached the finals in the junior division, ultimately placing sixth. At the senior level, Bourne, Hett, Anikken Gjerde-Alnaes, Schneider and Schwencke made the quarterfinals.

Back last Monday, Martin placed fifth in the skiathlon, finishing the 11.25-kilometer course in 1:00:6.5. Schneider also raced to a second-place finish in the 7.5K junior classic in 24:31.5.

In the 11.25K junior classic, Sonsterud was fourth in 33:13.9 and Ketterson fifth in 33:31.4.

The U.S. Distance Championships in Alaska was NMU’s final event of the 2016-17 campaign.

Information compiled by Journal Sports Editor Steve Brownlee. His email address is