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Team USA Grabs Silver at World Juniors

By Megan Harrod
February, 22 2019
Team USA at Junior World Champs
The United States celebrated its first-ever World Juniors Team Event medal at Junior World Ski Championships on Friday in Val di Fassa, Italy.

Team USA grabbed its second medal of the FIS Junior World Ski Championships in as many days on Friday in the Team Event, taking home silver, at Val di Fassa, Italy under the lights. The team was led by 2019 super-G World Junior Champion River Radamus (Edwards, Colo.), along with Ben Ritchie (Waitsfield, Vt.), AJ Hurt (Squaw Valley, Calif.) and Katie Hensien (Redmond, Wash.).

The American squad prevailed over the Czech Republic, Italy, and Sweden, but lost to France in the final. Germany rounded out the podium in third. Italy and Sweden both had strong teams, though Italy had a few crashes and the U.S. earned a hard-fought win over Sweden on a tiebreaker by mere hundredths. In the end, it was great teamwork from the athletes and staff that led to the silver medal.

Down 0-2 to Sweden, Hurt fought through a mistake that pushed her wide from the track, and Ritchie came through in the last heat with one of the fastest runs of the evening. “This event is really special because four athletes truly compete together, which doesn’t happen in any other event in our sport,” said Alpine Development Director Chip Knight. “The women’s and men’s staff works together on the hill, and all the athletes who aren’t racing were there cheering at the bottom. It was a true team effort.”

This was the first Team Event medal for the U.S. at Junior World Ski Championships, and the first Team Event medal at a major event outside of Whistler Cup (U16) last season. The women's super-G, originally scheduled for Friday, was cancelled due to high winds and rescheduled to Sunday. 

Up next at Junior World Championships is the men’s alpine combined on Saturday.

Team Event

Feb. 23  – Men’s alpine combined
Feb. 24  – Women’s alpine combined and women’s super-G (rescheduled from Friday)
Feb. 25  – Men’s giant slalom and women’s downhill training
Feb. 26  – Men’s slalom and women’s downhill training
Feb. 27  – Women’s downhill

Val di Fassa 2019