When it Matters Most!

February 29, 2020
Bozeman, MT

University of Denver Women’s Alpine Team Celebrates the Victory.

From Left: Eleri Smart, Andrea Komsic, Storm Klomhaus, Katie Hensien, and Amelia Smart
What do you do?

People often ask me what it feels like when you are in the start gate and what happens in the next 60 seconds will end either in a victory or defeat.

“What do you do?”

For me I push that out of my head and focus in on the task at hand. The course in front of me, my plan for skiing it to my best ability: Clean and Fast. Most of the time when I am in the start gate it’s only about me and the course and the only fate I am impacting is my own.

But that feeling, I have to admit was different for me at the RMSIA championships this year. For the first time, my result mattered not just to me but to my team. Let me explain….

When you belong to a D1 Ski Team and are competing in a college race. The Top 3 Finishers for your team earn points. Every point counts and at the RMSIA championship this year the University of Denver delivered an amazing victory. Each day there were incredible performances by both the Alpine and Nordic teams to keep us in striking distance of the division favorites the University of Utah.

DU Alpine Women Sweep RMSIA Champs SL Podium: Amelia Smart(1), Storm Klomhaus(2), Katie Hensien(3)

On the last day, the final events were Men’s and Women’s SL. Thanks to strong skiing by the men DU found itself behind Utah by 20 points (597-577). In order for Denver to win, the women would have to sweep the podium. That’s exactly what we did. After traveling for most of the season and missing the majority of the college races, I finally had the opportunity to help the team secure the victory when it mattered most. Crossing the finish line felt great and I knew I skied well.

Celebrating the win and our graduating seniors!

But it was a bit bitter sweet. This race would be the last as a team – Storm, Andrea, and Nick Santinello would all be graduating and moving on. It felt even better to have our last race together as a team this season end in a win for them!

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