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Ashland teen qualifies for national event

ASHLAND — A sophomore at Ashland High School has qualified for the United States Amateur Snowboarding Association national meet.

Oliver Krant, 15, who was also a part of Ashland High's state championship snowboard team, will compete in the prestigious meet at Copper Mountain, Colo., in early April. Krant qualified for nationals by placing first in the slopestyle event and third in the halfpipe in the Copper Series Region.

Krant has studied full-time as a boarding student at Crested Butte Academy in Crested Butte, Colo., where the head coach is Bud Keene, the former head coach for the U.S. Olympic halfpipe snowboard team.

Krant's first-place regional showing clinched a spot in the national competition for slopestyle, but he is also trying to earn a spot in the halfpipe event. His third-place effort came despite the fact that his home mountain, Mt. Ashland, does not have a halfpipe.

Crested Butte Academy has a year-round training program for athletes, starting with a dry land regimen in August that includes yoga, cross country running and conditioning for the high altitude. Students also construct an indoor gravity center which allows them to practice tracks and hone skills in a foam pit, on a trampoline and at an indoor skate park.