Missoula's Darian Stevens earns her spot in the 2018 Olympics - ABC FOX Montana Local News, Weather, Sports KTMF | KWYB

Missoula's Darian Stevens earns her spot in the 2018 Olympics

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It's been a long road for Missoula's own Darian Stevens after failing to reach the 2014 winter Olympics by just one spot.

When it seemed like her Olympic dream was over for Darian, she fought back to make her life-long goal a reality.

Darian began hitting the slopes at just three years old. Her parents say she picked up the sport about as fast as she picked up her ski poles.

“It took her just two runs on the bunny slope, and he took her up, and you could barely see her hat over the bunny hill,” said her mother, Chris.

It wasn't long until she became an elite competitor in slope style skiing. The event was only added to the Olympics in 2011.

"It was kind of crazy," she says, "Once I figured out it was possible for me to go to the Olympics, [slope style] was put in the Olympics."

In 2014, her Olympic dream fell short by just one spot, failing to qualify for the Sochi Olympics.

But this shortfall was the driving force as she set her sights on Pyeongchang.

"It definitely took me a while, but I definitely use it as motivation more than anything, and not really spending my time dwelling on what could have been but more on using it as motivation and pushing myself harder to make sure I made the next team," she says.

That one spot pushed her harder than ever to make it this year and her parents, Chris and Tom, could not be more proud, saying nobody hates losing more than Darian.

“Proud, very proud. So few people make it to that level that it is awesome for her,” said Tom.

“We used to watch the Olympics and admire those athletes. And now she gets to be that athlete, said Chris.

After achieving her goal to represent the red white and blue, Darian said that she's ready to soak it all in.

"At the same time, [I want to] really get the full experience of the Olympics, because not a lot of people get to go to the Olympics," Darian says, "So I really want to just soak it all in, but not get too overwhelmed by the contest itself."

She leaves for Pyeongchang on February 6 and her parents will be making the trip on Valentine’s Day.

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