Copper Mountain hosted two weeks of United States of America Snowboard and Freeski Association national championships, including the snowboard competition April 1-5.
Seven members of the Purgatory snowboard team qualified for nationals to join hundreds of other teams at the competition that featured more than 1,500 athletes. The team was coached by Cody Beaver and Brian Bolan.
“This year, the team was a mix of older, experienced riders and kids new to the team,” said assistant coach Steve DeBelina.
Natalie DeBelina of Durango rode onto the overall podium in the 14-15 girls division with a total of 2,210 points. She was 15th in the halfpipe, 16th in both the giant slalom and slopestyle, 19th in boardercross and 20th in slalom. She added an 18th-place finish in the railjam.
Dominic Lochte-Bono of Durango competed in his first nationals and finished fifth in the 7-and-under boys overall. He placed sixth in boardercross, seventh in the halfpipe, ninth in the giant slalom, as well as 10th in the slalom and slopestyle events. He capped off the event with a 27th-place finish in railjam.
Durango’s Rory Stahl finished 20th among 12-13 boys in the overall. He was 41st in the giant slalom, 47th in halfpipe, 48th in boardercross, 53rd in slalom and 56th in slopestyle.
One year after winning a national championship in boardercross, Durango’s Madeline Lochte-Bono finished third in the event for girls age 14-15. She also placed 10th in the slalom and giant slalom events.
“Madeline has won national championships as recently as last year,” Steve DeBelina said. “This year, Madeline was again able to get to that final race in boardercross, but she was thwarted in her bid to repeat as champion.”
August Radding of Durango was 25th in the halfpipe competition for boys ages 8-9. He also placed 28th in slopestyle and 34th in railjam.
Mark Evan Glogowski of Durango was 30th in the slopestyle for boys ages 16-17.
Durango’s Nicholas Bodrug was 32nd of 96 competitors in the men’s open class slopestyle competition.
Rowan Holiday of Durango placed 20th in the railjam, 31st in slopestyle and 55th in the boardercross for boys ages 12-13.
Durango’s Leo Adair placed 34th in the halfpipe for boys ages 12-13.
Jason and Kaylee Underwood of Rio Rancho, New Mexico, are part of the Purgatory team and they make the trip up every weekend to train. Kaylee finished 18th in slopestyle and 20th in boardercross for girls 14-15. Jason was 44th in slopestyle, 51st in halfpipe and 57th in boardercross for boys age 10-11.
Jason and Kaylee’s mother, Krystal Underwood, was first in boardercross and slopestyle in the master women’s 30-39 division. Their father, Jason, was 11th in the men’s master’s boardercross for riders age 30-39.
“The whole family gained some valuable experience and are excited to train hard and come back next year,” Steve DeBelina said.
Zander Berriman of the Purgatory team was 38th in the halfpipe for boys ages 12-13. The competition was held in a 22-foot superpipe.
“That’s especially impressive since Purgatory’s halfpipe is only 12-feet tall,” Steve DeBelina said.