Hard work and multiple trips to Colorado Springs to practice in the velodrome paid off for the Fort Lewis College cycling team.
The Skyhawks finished third in the varsity team standings last weekend at the USA Cycling Collegiate Track National Championships in Colorado Springs. Marian University won with 1,201 points. Colorado Mesa University narrowly edged FLC for second with 992 points, while the Skyhawks totaled 967 points to finish well ahead of the 713 from fourth-place Belmont Abbey College.
FLC was led on the men’s team by James Hilyer, who had a strong weekend to finish fourth in the individual omnium standings. Cade Bickmore of Marian was the individual omnium gold medalist. Tristen Musselman was the top point getter for the FLC women. She finished 11th in the women’s omnium with 249 points. Olivia Ray of Savannah College of Art & Design was first with 474 points.
Hilyer won the men’s points race. He completed 90 laps for a total of 18.64 miles and racked up 30 points for the first-place finish. Kent Ross of the University of Oregon was second with 20 total points. Hilyer also placed second in the men’s scratch race behind Bickmore.
FLC’s women finished second in the team pursuit finals. The Skyhawks’ team of Emily Abraham, Musselman, Kira Payer and Sophie Russenberger finished in 5:10.182 seconds. Marian won in 4:57.812.
The FLC men were third in the team pursuit in 4:32.256. The team was made up of Peter Behm, Andre Bos, Hilyer and Nicholas Mickey. Marian won in 4:21.10. Colorado Mesa was second in 4:26.508.
FLC would finish the weekend with a fifth-place finish in the coed team sprint finals. Marian won in 2:08.164. FLC’s Weston Flickinger, Hilyer, Kaden Hopkins, Bos, Abraham and Musselman finished in 2:14.285.
FLC will try to claim its 24th national championship in its cycling program history Oct. 19-21 at the USA Cycling Collegiate Mountain Bike National Championships in Missoula, Montana. FLC is the defending mountain bike national champion.