Foster wins national title to lead Syracuse TC to fourth place team finish

Results & Photos

The 2017 USATF National Club Cross Country Championships were held on Saturday (9-Dec) at Masterson Station Park in Lexington, Kentucky.  Seventy (70) local athletes from the Niagara association were among the 1171 competitors from around the country that compete in the five races - Open Women (6 km), Open Men (10 km), Masters Women (6 km), Masters Men 40-59 yrs (10 km) and Masters Men 60+ yrs. (8 km).
There was a chill in the air, a bite to the wind and frost on the ground as runners contended with temperatures that never rose above freezing.
MASTERS MEN - Foster wins 65-69 title
The storyline of the day for the locals was the national title won by James Foster, 66, (Syracuse Track Club; Chittenango, NY) in the masters 65-69 division.  He ran 33:21 over the 8 km course to outrun Kirk Larson of Georgia by over a minute.  In fourth place was his teammate Theodore Larison, 65,  (Cortland, NY) running 36:08.  Foster’s 82.53% age graded score was the fifth best (out of 110 competitors) in the 50+ 8 km race. In the 60-64 division Foster’s Syracuse TC teammates Brian Cummins, 62, (Cortland, NY) and John Austin, 62, (Syracuse) finished 8th and 25th, respectively.  Cummins age-graded scores was 80.52% for 10th place.  The team of Cummings, Foster, and Austin scored of 34 points to finish fourth in a highly competitive 60+ team competition that included 14 teams.  They were just 2 points behind third place Shore AC (New Jersey) as Club Northwest (Pacific Northwest) dominated the competition with just 9 points.  The Genesee Valley Harriers team finished eighth in the team standings with 78 points.
In the men’s 70-74 division Tony Gingello (Genesee Valley Harriers, Rochester, NY) finished fifth running 37:13.  He teamed with Keith Yeates (Pittsford, NY) and Jim May (Williamson, NY to lead the GVH 70+ team to a third place team finish.
In the 10 km masters race for athletes ages 40-59, Mike Nier (Genesee Valley Harriers, Rochester, NY) finished 19th in the 50-54 division and Joseph Mora III (Genesee Valley Harriers, Fayetteville, NY) matched Neir as he placed 19th in the 55-59 division.  The Genesee Valley Harriers 50+ team finished sixth with 159 points.
MASTERS WOMEN - GVH 40+ team makes the podium
Patricia Ford, 62, (Syracuse Track Club, La Fayette, NY) finished third in the women’s 60-64 division to earn a trip to the podium during the post-race awards ceremony.  She ran 28:40 for the 6 km course and was only 13 second behind division winner Jill Miller-Robinett of California.  Sharon Moore, 63, (Genesee Valley Harriers, Rochester, NY) closely followed Ford across the line as she finished fifth in the division running 28:55.

In the age graded standings Moore (80.96%) and Ford (80.62%) finished 33rd and 34th, respectively.  The top age-graded performance for the Niagara athletes was turned in by Karyl Sargent (photo), 54, (Syracuse TC, Lafayette, NY) with a score of 83.33.  Sargent ran 25:09 to finish sixth in the highly competitive 50-54 division.  Marisa Sutera Strange of New York, the 2017 USATF Harrier of the Year, won the division running 23:12. She was followed by a quartet of seasoned masters harriers from California  - Aeron Arlin Genet (23:21), Kirsten Leetch (23:42), Tania Fischer (24:02), and Liisa Miller (24:34) - that preceded Sargent across the line.
Laura Kline, 40, (Syracuse TC, Syracuse, NY), a newbie to the masters ranks, finished a strong sixth in the 40-44 division running 23:29.
In the team competition, the GVH 50+ team and the Syracuse TC 60+ squad each finished fourth in their division.  
OPEN - Maloy and Potter lead the youngsters
Chad Maloy, 24, of Boston, NY and Kathleen Potter, 28, of Honeoye Falls; both running for GVH, were the top finishers in the Open races. 
In the open men’s race Maloy, a 2015 Canisius College graduate, ran 30:53 on the 10 km course to place 48th in a field of 424 runners.  The race was won by Ian La Mere of Michigan in 29:10 as 18 men broke 30 minutes. The Genesee Valley Harriers finished 22nd (out of 49 teams) in the team competition. The Tinman Elite from Colorado won with 41 points.  Rounding out the scoring for the GVH men were Brennan Root (Rush, NY), Tyler Eustance (Hilton, NY), Robert Hurlbut (Rochester, NY), and Matthew Pierce (Rochester, NY).
In the women’s race Potter ran 21:15 on the 6 km course to place 67th; one spot better than her 68th place finish last year. A total of 246 women competed.  She led the GVH women to a 15th place finish (out of 30 teams) as the Hanson-Brooks team from Michigan won. Joining Potter in the top 100 were GVH teammates Ashley Nevol (Andover, NY) and Danielle Groff (East Rochester, NY) in 81st and 87th, respectively.  Donna Langerfeld (Port Byron, NY) and Danae Polsin (Rochester, NY) rounded out the scoring for the team.
To see how all the Niagara athletes finished click here.
Next year's championships will be held on December 8 in Spokane, Washington.

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