Mueller places 30th in giant slalom at NCAA Championships

Griffin Mueller made her NCAA Championship debut by placing 30th in the women's giant slalom on March 7, 2018 at Mount Werner in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. (File photo by Gil Talbot/Gil Talbot Photography)

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, Colo. -- Skiing in her lesser discipline, the giant slalom, Bates sophomore Griffin Mueller finished a respectable 30th out of 34 competitors on Wednesday, to begin the 2018 NCAA National Collegiate Skiing Championships.

Racing on Mt. Werner, Mueller (West Vail, Colo.) recorded a two-run combined time of 2:05.50. As it turned out, just finishing both of her runs earned her 30th place and an all-important team point for Bates in the championship -- one competitor did not finish her first run, and three more failed to finish their second runs.

The Bobcats, who also have sophomore Nordic skier Kaelyn Woods (New Gloucester, Maine) competing at NCAAs beginning Thursday, currently stand in 17th place among 23 participating teams.

Mueller will have her chance to shine on Friday night in the women's slalom, the event she most excels in. Mueller produced consistently strong results in the slalom during the EISA carnival season -- she notched four top-12 finishes in the slalom out of six carnivals, including seventh place at the Colby Carnival and eighth place at Williams. She will compete in her better discipline on Friday beginning at 8:45 Eastern time at Howelsen Hill in Steamboat Springs.