Rowley goes big to win second title |

Rowley goes big to win second title

Thomas Rowley flies above the crowd Friday during the men's moguls national championships. The New York skier went big on his jumps and kept it together through the bumps, paving the way for a second national championship.
Joel Reichenberger

U.S. Freestyle National Championships, men's moguls results

Podium and Steamboat finishers

1 Thomas Rowley 91.52

2 Bryan Zemba 90.61

3 Dylan Walczyk 89.94

4 Jeremy Cota 89.63

Thomas Rowley has become plenty familiar with the top of the podium at the U.S Freestyle National Championships in Steamboat Springs.

Rowley, a native of Long Island in New York, grew up traveling three hours each way to get his laps in.

Friday, he won his second national championship in Steamboat, this time in moguls. A year ago in Steamboat, he emerged atop the field in dual moguls.

He’ll go for the weekend sweep and a third overall championship in the dual moguls Sunday.

“It’s nice to get a singles win,” he said. “Sunday, I just want to go in, ski fast and hopefully, end up on top again.”

If he skis the way he did Friday, he’ll have a great chance.

The key, he said, was his top jump, where he laid out a double full, two spins and a flip.

“That’s what set me apart in the end,” he said. “After that, I just tried to keep the skiing tight and fast.”

He was scored at 91.52 for his run. Bryan Zemba was second at 90.61, rocketing his way onto the podium with one of the day’s fastest skiing times, and Dylan Walczyk was third, at 89.94.

Steamboat’s Jeremy Cota ended up just off the podium, in fourth place, at 89.63.

On a day when such scant margins separated the top three skiers, he wasn’t complaining.

“I could have cleaned up the jumps. That’s about it,” Cota said. “I skied a lot faster than I did in qualification and definitely fast enough to win. My turns were pretty clean, but there were a couple of really small mistakes in the jumps.

“I was really happy with that run. The other guys skied out of their minds.”

Next up for the championships is aerials, starting at 11 a.m. Saturday at Steamboat Ski Area.

All Friday’s moguls skiers will be back on the snow Sunday for the dual moguls competition.

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