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Ladies first

PAUL SMITHS, N.Y. -- For the second straight year, the women were first on stage in the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Collegiate Challenge Northeastern conclave presented by Carhartt, and for the second straight year, they didn't disappoint.

Rosalie Santerre, of Paul Smith's College, wasn't even supposed to be competing, but Paul Smith's original competitor dislocated her elbow last Wednesday. That put Santerre into the top spot with almost no time to train.

"There wasn't a lot of pressure because there weren't expectations," she said. "I just did the best I could."

Her best was enough, as Santerre won both the underhand (50.9 seconds) and stock saw (20.05 seconds) and finished third in the single buck (29.86 seconds), which gave her a three point victory over Finger Lakes Community College's Kendra Trammel.

This was Santerre's first year on the Paul Smith's woodsmen team and her first STIHL TIMBERSPORTS competition.

"This was so great," she said. "I wish they had these all over the country."

All 12 of the female competitors shared her excitement. Trammel participated in last year's event and was happy to get a chance to compete with a little more experience.

"I can't even explain how excited I am that we had this event," she said. "Everybody was excited about it, even the men on the team. We were all excited to see the women's side of the sport get the opportunity."