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Dartmouth Grad Wins U.S. Alpine Title

Squaw Valley, Calif. — David Chodounsky won his second U.S. Alpine Championships slalom title Saturday.

Chodounsky is a 2008 Dartmouth College graduate and won the 2006 NCAA slalom title.

Chodounsky, a resident of Crested Butte, Colo., who also won the slalom at nationals in 2009, finished with a two-run time of 1 minute, 35.82 seconds. He was in third place after the opening leg, but made up his deficit in the second leg.

“I was on the limit at a couple spots, but it worked out,” said Chodounsky, who failed to finish the slalom at the Sochi Olympics and finished 19th in the World Cup discipline standings.

First-run leader Tim Kelley of Starksboro, Vt., was next in 1:36.24. Will Brandenburg of Spokane, Wash., was third.

“This national title keeps eluding me, and I’m not happy about it,” Brandenburg said.

 On the women’s side, Olympic gold medalist Mikaela Shiffrin failed to finish the first leg of the slalom, and Marie-Michele Gagnon of Canada won the title by a hundredth of a second on.

Shiffrin, of Eagle-Vail, Colo., and a former Lyme resident, became the youngest slalom champion in Winter Games history last month in Russia, then wrapped up a second consecutive World Cup title in that event. She also won the U.S. nationals giant slalom on Thursday.

But she made a mistake late in Saturday’s opening run.

“I felt like I just got going a little bit too fast and I didn’t move my feet quick enough. In inspection, I saw this section of the course, and I’m like, ‘Oh, you can let it rip there. The finish is in sight.’ So I let it go. I just let it go a little bit too much and got a little bit out of balance,” said Shiffrin, who turned 19 on March 13. “I’m bummed that I don’t get a second run.”

Athletes from other countries are allowed to enter races at the U.S. Alpine Championships, and Gagnon completed the two runs in 1 minute, 39.61 seconds.

That allowed her to edge Resi Stiegler of Jackson Hole, Wyo., who led after the first leg but wound up second in 1:39.62. Lila Lapanja of Lake Tahoe was third in 1:41.70.