Despite facing windy conditions throughout the day, the University of Colorado ski team was able to overcome the elements and find success at the Rocky Mountain Intercollegiate Ski Association qualifier Friday at Big Sky Resort in Bozeman, Mont.

The qualifier, which came a day before the Montana State Invitational is set to begin, serves as another shot for skiers to earn qualification points for the NCAA Championships at the end of the season.

The Buffs placed nine skiers in the top 20 of the giant slalom races, including sophomore Brooke Wales' fifth-place finish on the women's side and sophomore Kasper Hietanen's sixth-place finish for the men.

Wales' two-run time of 2:00.39 led the CU women. Teammate Shane McLean, a junior, finished eighth with a time of 2:01.82, and Buffs' sophomore Thea Grosvold clocked in at 2:03.69 to place 14th.

Meanwhile, the men placed five members of the squad in the top 20. After Hietanen's time of 1:56.16, senior Andreas Haug crossed the line at 1:58.80, good for 10th. Haug was followed by Buffs Henrik Gunnarsson, Adam Zika and Cameron Smith, who placed 12th, 15th and 17th, respectively.

The invitational will kick off today with another pair of giant slalom races on the alpine side and events will continue through Sunday.

Rocky Mountain Intercollegiate Ski Association qualifier

Men's Giant Slalom (40 Collegiate Finishers) -- 1. Trevor Philp, DU, 1:55.


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49; 2. Sebastian Brigovic, DU, 1:56.02; 3. Tim Lindgren, WMC, 1:57.03; 4. Grant Jampolsky, DU, 1:57.86; 5. Espen Lysdahl, DU, 1:57.89; 6. Jonas Nyberg, WMC and Kasper Hietanen, CU, 1:58.16; 8. Armin Triendl, UNM, 1:58.38; 9. Sean Horner, UNM, 1:58.73; 10. Andreas Haug, CU, 1:58.80. Other CU finishers: 12. Henrik Gunnarsson, 1:59.06; 15. Adam Zika, 1:59.43; 17. Cameron Smith, 1:59.46; 23. Tanner Mottau, 2:00.66; 24. Roger Carry, 2:00.68. Did Not Finish (First Run): Fletcher McDonald.

Women's Giant Slalom (36 Collegiate Finishers)-- 1. Kristine Haugen, DU, 1:59.64; 2. Kelly McBroom, MSU, 1:59.82; 3. Mateja Robnik, UNM and Kristiina Rove, UU, 2:00.31; 5. Brooke Wales, CU, 2:00.39; 6. Chloe Fausa, UU, 2:00.82; 7. Natalie Knowles, DU, 2:01.66; 8. Shane McLean, CU, 2:01.82; 9. Tonje Sekse, WMC, 2:01.99; 10. Stephanie Irwin, MSU, 2:02.99. Other CU finishers: 14. Thea Grosvold, 2:03.69; 19. Jessica Honkonen, 2:04.58; 23. Katie Hostetler, 2:04.96; 27. Clare Wise, 2:06.56.