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2019-20 U.S. Freestyle Ski Team Announced

By Lara Carlton
November, 8 2019
Jaelin Kauf
Jaelin Kauf competes in the 2019 FIS Dual Moguls World Championships at Deer Valley Resort (U.S. Ski & Snowboard - Stephen Earl)

U.S. Ski & Snowboard has announced the 2019-20 U.S. Freestyle Ski Team. Thirty-two athletes will represent the United States in aerials and moguls competition around the world in what is sure to be an exciting season of freestyle skiing. Earning thirteen elite-level medals in the 2018-19 season, the Team will look to build off of last year’s successes.

“Watching the Freestyle athletes train here at the Center of Excellence and the Utah Olympic Park this summer it’s clear they’re putting in the work to get strong and develop their skills,” said U.S. Ski & Snowboard Freestyle Director Jeremy Forster. “We have a passionate group of athletes and coaches, and I look forward to seeing what they accomplish this season.”

Top-ranked American aerials athletes Ashley Caldwell and Eric Loughran will lead the emerging aerials crew on their World Cup tour, which they kick off in Moscow on Jan. 25. Last season seven U.S. athletes finished in the top-10 in the world: Ashley (4), Madison Varmette (6), Winter Vinecki (7), Megan Nick (10), Eric (7), Chis Lillis (8) and Justin Schoenefeld (10). In addition to three new rookie members, Kaila Kuhn, Quinn Dehlinger, and Megan Smallhouse, the team also has a new head coach, Vladimir Lebedev, after Todd Ossian retired last spring. The Team has been hard at work all summer prepping in the gym and on the water ramps at official training site Utah Olympic Park, they hope to jump on snow by December as long as Mother Nature cooperates.

“I’m really looking forward to the season ahead,” said U.S. Ski & Snowboard Head Aerials Coach Vladimir Lebedev. “The team has had a very productive summer. All of our athletes have made improvements and the whole team is incredibly motivated to be successful this season.”

2019 World Championships medalists Jaelin Kauf, Tess Johnson, and Brad Wilson head the 18-member moguls roster, which features the deepest field of female moguls talent in the world. Rethinking the standard moguls training process, athletes and coaches have been working hard on developing the whole run and increasing degree of difficulty on airs. Athletes continue to push the boundaries of their sport, last season Olivia Giaccio threw the first cork-10 in moguls competition for women and new members Alex Lewis and Nick Page both have cork-14s in their arsenal. This spring two new World Cup coaches joined the moguls crew: Joe Discoe and Riley Campbell, both former bumps skiers and a collective 15 years of coaching experience between them. The team enters their final prep camp in Sweden ahead of the FIS Open Freestyle in Idrefjäll Nov. 23 & 24 and their first World Cup competition in Ruka, Finland on Dec. 7. 

“Every new season is a reset from the last, and this team is hungry for success and strives to do things better,” said U.S. Ski & Snowboard Head Moguls Matt Gnoza. “We have the potential to reach peak performance and the athletes are determined to get there. We will continue to keep working, and make every run count, so that we accomplish our desired results this season.”

The U.S. Freestyle Ski Team will criss-cross the globe to compete in 19 World Cups spanning three continents for the 2019-20 season. Stops include an inaugural aerials event in Tbilisi, Georgia, a joint aerials and moguls event in Almaty, Kazakhstan and moguls finals in Idrefjäll, Sweden. Fans hoping to catch some action on home snow will have their chance at the Intermountain Healthcare Freestyle International Feb. 6-8 at Deer Valley Resort in Park City, Utah. Athletes will compete under the lights to thunderous crowds on the 2002 Olympic venues and vie for World Cup glory. 

2019-20 Freestyle Team

(Hometown; Club; Birthdate)

U.S. Aerials Team
Men

Alex Bowen (Springville, N.Y.; Buffalo Ski Club; 5/21/92)
Quinn Dehlinger (Cincinnati, Ohio; Elite Aerial Development Program; 6/8/02)
Chris Lillis (Pittsford, N.Y.; Bristol Mountain Freestyle Team; 4/10/98)
Jon Lillis (Pittsford, N.Y.; Bristol Mountain Freestyle Team; 8/20/94)
Eric Loughran (Pelham, N.H.; Loon Mountain Freestyle; 12/4/95)
Nick Novak (Stafford, Va.; Elite Aerial Development Program; 3/15/96)
Justin Schoenefeld (Lawrenceburg, Ind.; Elite Aerial Development Program; 8/13/98)

Women
Ashley Caldwell (Ashburn, Va.; Elite Aerial Development Program; 9/14/93)
Kaila Kuhn (Boyne City, Mich.; Park City Ski and Snowboard; 4/8/03)
Megan Nick (Shelburne, Vt,; Elite Aerial Development Program; 7/9/96)
Morgan Northrop (Haymarket, Va.; Elite Aerial Development Program; 4/16/94)
Megan Smallhouse (Reno, Nev.; Park City Ski and Snowboard; 1/16/01)
Winter Vinecki (Gaylord, Mich.; Park City Ski and Snowboard; 12/18/98)
Madison Varmette (Stafford, Va.; Elite Aerial Development Program; 5/8/96)

U.S. Moguls Team
Men

Casey Andringa (Boulder, Colo.; Ski & Snowboard Club Vail; 10/6/95)
Jesse Andringa (Boulder, Colo.; Ski & Snowboard Club Vail; 12/15/97)
Joel Hedrick (Fort Collins, Colo.; Winter Park Competition Center; 5/30/97)
Alex Lewis (Carlisle, Mass.; Killington Mountain School; 11/16/99)
Nick Page (Park City, Utah; Wasatch Freestyle Foundation; 8/1/02)
Thomas Rowley (Long Beach, N.Y.; Hunter Mountain Freestyle Team; 7/2/94)
Emerson Smith (Frisco, Colo.; Ski & Snowboard Club Vail; 2/13/97)
Brad Wilson (Butte, Mont.; Wasatch Freestyle; 6/5/92)

Women
Sabrina Cass (Cheshire, Conn.; Wasatch Freestyle Foundation; 3/27/02)
Nessa Dziemian (East Hampstead, N.H.; Park City Freestyle Ski Team; 4/14/94)
Olivia Giaccio (Vail, Colo.; Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club; 8/15/00)
Tess Johnson (Edwards, Colo.; Ski & Snowboard Club Vail; 6/19/00)
Jaelin Kauf (Alta, Wyo.; Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club; 9/26/96)
Kai Owens (Vail, Colo.; Ski and Snowboard Club Vail; 8/16/04)
Kenzie Radway (Steamboat Springs, Colo.; Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club; 6/22/03)
Morgan Schild (Pittsford, N.Y.; Ski & Snowboard Club Vail; 8/25/97)
Hannah Soar (Somers, Conn.; Killington Mountain School; 6/4/99)
Avital Shimko (Manhattan, N.Y.; Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club; 4/24/96)

2019-20 Freestyle Staff
Freestyle Director: Jeremy Forster
Freestyle Team Manager: Alexis Williams
Freestyle Communications Manager: Lara Carlton
Sport Development Senior Manager: Ashley Diebold
Sport Development Coordinator: Elise Saarela

Moguls Staff
Head Moguls Coach: Matt Gnoza
World Cup Moguls Coach: Riley Campbell
World Cup/NorAm Coach: Joe Discoe

Aerials Staff
Head Aerials Coach: Vladimir Lebedev
World Cup Aerials Coach: Eric Bergoust

Medical & Sports Science Staff
High Performance Dietitian: Allen Tran
Senior Sports Psychologist, USOPC: Alex Cohen
Moguls Team Physical Therapist: Chuck Williams
Moguls Team Athletic Development Coach: Josh Bullock
Aerials Team Physical Therapist: Peter Toohey
Aerials Team Athletic Development Coach: Houston Deck
Freestyle Athletic Development Manager: Tschana Schiller 

Follow the U.S. Freestyle Ski Team:
Instagram: @usskiteam
Facebook: @usskiandsnowboard
Twitter: @usskiteam

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