RESULTS: Niagara Open & Masters Cross Country Championships


The 2016 USATF Niagara Open & Masters Cross Country Championships were held on Sunday, October 23 at Genesee Valley Park in Rochester.   Four championship races were held - Open Men , Open Women, Masters Men and Masters Women.  The open men's race was 8 km and the other races were 6 km.  A total of 181 athletes competed in the four championship races.  

OPEN WOMEN: Team Battle Highlights Open Women's Race
The most dramatic story of the day was the team competition in the women's open championship as the Genesee Valley Harriers (GVH) won, but needed a "best fifth runner" to break a tie with  upstart Red Newt Racing.  Both teams finished with 37 points after their first five runners were scored. Donna Langerfeld, GVH's fifth runner,  finished 13th to finish 16 seconds and four places  ahead of Red Newt's fifth runner.  GVH's five scorers were Kathryn Potter (1st), Ashley Nevol (4th), Danielle Groff (7th), Leila Mantilla (12th), and  Langerfeld (13th).  Checkers AC finishd third with 48 points and RoadKill Racing was fourth with 131 points.

Potter, 27, of Honeoye Falls won the individual title running 21:34 over the 6 km course.  Finishing second and third were Red Newt Racing teammates Julianne Quinn and Kristina Kronauer. They stopped the clock at 21:02 and 21:12, respectively.

OPEN MEN: De Haan Wins; GVH Takes Team Title in Open Men's Race
While not as close the women's race, the men's race was a tight three team battle between GVH, Syracuse TC, and Bergen Road Race Elite.  At last year's championships the same three teams were seperated by 21 points but this year the margin was a mere 11 points.  Led by the second place finish by Omar Boulama, the GVH men were able to defend their 2015 title with a score of 38 points.  They were trailed by the Syrcuase TC with 47 points and Bergen Elite with 49 points.  Backing up Boulama's low stick was Matt Pierce (7th), Tim Chichester (8th), Robert Hurlbut (9th) and Mike Anvelt (21st).

The open men's race was won by Ben De Haan, 23, of Ithaca in 25:12.  He was 15 seconds clear of Boulama, 22, of Walworth but the race was
 actually much tighter than the final results indicated. The race came down to the final 75 meters with with the two runners running stride-for-stride but Boulama slipped on some mud and took a spill to the ground. He picked himself up and jogged in to take second place.
Finishing third was Bergen Elite's Elliot Martynkiewic, 22, of East Aurora in 25:34.

MASTERS: Evans and Sargent Top Masters; GVH Take 6 of 7 Team Titles
In the masters championships the top performances (based on age graded scoring) were turned in by Alan Evans (men) and Karyl Sargent (women).  
Evans, 53, of Beaver Dams won the men’s 50-54 division stopping the clock at 21:27 which scored 84.98 on the age-graded scoring tables. Derrick Jones, 45, of Henrietta and Joe Mora, 55, of Fayetteville had the second and third best men’s age-graded performances of 84.24% and 83.95%, respectively. Jones was the men’s 45-49 champion running 20:20 and Mora was the men’s 55-59 champion in 22:04.
Other division winners were: Mike Melfi (40-44), Mark Rybinsk (60-64), Fred Miller (65-69), and Jim May (70-74).
In the masters men team competition the winning teams were:  Syracuse TC (M40+), Genesee Valley Harriers (M50+), Genesee Valley Harriers (M60+), Genesee Valley Harriers (M70+).  In the men’s 60+ standings GVH just edged Syracuse TC by 1 point; 10 to 11.
In the women’s competition Sargent’s age-graded score was 83.09% with Kathy Hayden (81.32%) and Heather Webster (80.83%) turning in the second and third best scores, resepecively.
Hayden, 51, of Rochester won the women’s 50-54 division running 24:54 with Sargent, 53, of Lafayette just 2 seconds back in 24:56.  Webster, 42, of Honeoye Falls won the women’s 40-44 division running 22:59. 
Other masters champions were:  Amy Fakterowitz (45-49), Colleen Magnussen (55-59), Patti Ford (60-64), and Cindy Ingalls (65-69).
The Genesee Valley Harriers swept the masters women's team titles winning the W40+, W50+, and W60+ divisions. 

media services by