COLCHESTER, Vt. - Saint Michael's College Alpine skiing sophomore Brad Farrell (West Windsor, Vt./Sharon Academy) has qualified to compete in the NCAA Championship, as he was among 74 men chosen to take part in an event that involves student-athletes from Divisions I, II and III. The NCAA Championship will be hosted by the University of Utah, with the giant slalom occurring on March 5 and the slalom on March 7, both at Park City Mountain Resort, which hosted races during the 2002 Winter Olympics.
Farrell, who was one of 34 male Alpine skiers chosen, and among 16 from the East region, is just the 10th Purple Knight to ever qualify for an NCAA Championship, and the sixth Alpine skier. With Brad Harden '10 competing in 2009 and 2010 and junior Fredrik Sandell (Oslo, Norway/Donski Alpine) qualifying in 2012 and 2013, Farrell gives Saint Michael's an NCAA selection for the fifth time in six years. The Purple Knights claimed a top-20 team finish during three of their past four appearances.
The Purple Knights' most consistent competitor the past two seasons, Farrell has paced Saint Michael's during 18 of 24 regular-season races since joining the program last winter. He has had 17 top-20 placements, finishing in the top 15 10 times. Farrell was in the top 10 three times, all coming this season, with his best slalom showing an eighth-place performance on Jan. 26 at the University of Vermont Carnival and his top giant slalom placement being ninth at last weekend's Middlebury Carnival. That meet was also the Eastern Intercollegiate Ski Association (EISA) Championship and the NCAA East Regional Championship.
Farrell's path to the NCAA Championship has been anything but typical. He began his college career as a reserve soccer goalkeeper at Division I Vermont in the fall of 2010, becoming the third member of his immediate family to play sports at UVM, after posting 40 shutouts during a four-year career at Sharon Academy. However, the former standout junior skier left school as a first-year before coming to Saint Michael's for the 2012-13 school year. His brother, Bobby, is a member of the UVM Alpine skiing team and qualified for the 2012 NCAA Championship, and their father, James, played baseball at UVM and is a member of the school's Athletic Hall of Fame.