From Paul Merca
ROCHESTER - See Jane Run successfully defended their open women's team title and Hansons-Brooks reclaimed the open men's team title Saturday at the 2005 USATF National Club Cross Country Championships, sponsored by Brooks Sports, at Genesee Valley Park in Rochester.
A runner-up finish by Erika Aklufi, led Southern California's See Jane Run to the open women's team competition for the second year in a row, with 86 points, defeating the Boston Athletic Association with 101 points. Placing third was the adidas Raleigh Track Cub with 139 followed closely by fourth-place Indiana Invaders with 140 points and The Farm Team fifth with 142 points.
In the open men's team competition, Brian Sell's fifth place finish led the Hansons-Brooks Distance Project to its fourth national club title in five years, with a score of 50 points, 18 points ahead of the runner-up Asics Aggies. Rounding out the top five were Team XO (Oregon), Wisconsin Runner RT, Boston Athletic Association (New England).
Former University of Wisconsin standout Matt Tegenkamp (Madison, Wisc.) turned in an impressive performance in winning the open men's 10 km race and Elizabeth Woodworth (Baton Rouge, La.) won the open women's 6 km.
Tegenkamp, the 2001 junior men's national champion, broke open an exciting duel with former NAIA All-American Fernando Cabada of Bristol, Va., winning the race in 29:47, while Cabada finished in the runner-up spot in 29:50.
Finishing third was Max King (Bend, Ore.), in a time of 30:01. Fourth was Brandon Leslie (Albuquerque, N.M.) in 30:05, and fifth was Brian Sell (Rochester Hills, Mich.) in 30:07.
Woodworth, an NCAA Division III All-American who attended the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, took command in the middle of the second lap to win the race in a time of 20:29, six seconds ahead of Aklufi (Santa Monica, Calif.).
Samia Akbar (Herndon, Va.) finished third in a time of 20:36. Rounding out the top-five was Erin Dromgoole (Brighton, Mass.) in 20:37, and Erin Nehus (Galliolis, Ohio), who ran 20:43.
In the women's masters race, Carmen Ayala-Troncoso (Austin, Tex.) took command from the gun winning overall in 21:44 to claim the women's 45-49 title.
In addition, women's national age group titles were won by; Karen Steen (40-44), Cathy Utzschneider (50-54), Carolyn Smith-Hanna (55-59), Mary Shaver (60-64), Carrie Parsi (65-69) and Mary Harada (70-74).
The men's masters race saw Pete Magill (South Pasadena, Calif.), 1984 Olympic marathoner John Tuttle (Atlanta, Ga.), and Scott Bagley (Pittsford, N.Y.) in a fierce battle over the last 100 meters, with Magill emerging victorious over Bagley in a identical time of 32:46. Tuttle's 32:49 was good for the men's 45-49 national title.
Additional men's national age group titles were won by; Tom Ryan (50-54), Terry McCluskey (55-59), Terry Delph (60-64), Bill Borla (65-69), Ray Parrella (70-74) and Richard Sullivan (75-79).
Seattle's Club Northwest, led by Regina Joyce's second place finish, packed four runners in the top eight to successfully defend its women's 40+ team title, defeating the host Genesee Valley Harriers 11 points to 26. The Genesee Valley Harriers also won team titles in the 50+ and 60+ divisions.
Team Runner's High from the Southern California Association won the men's 40+ team title. Additional age group team titles were won by; Derby City A/C (50+), Raritan Valley (60+) and Belle Watling (70+).
The USATF National Club Cross Country Championships featured clubs from across the United States vying for top honors and bragging rights as the nation's best cross country teams. Over 60 clubs and 900 competitors took part in the event, which featured a 10-kilometer open and masters men's races and a 6-kilometer open and masters women's race. The 2006 championships will be held in San Francisco, Calf. on December 9.
Carmen Ayala-Troncoso, Rogue Running, masters women's (Austin, Texas) - Winning doesn't get old, but it gets harder and harder. It was windy, but it was a beautiful day. I think I ran the first half a little too fast, because I wanted to warm up. I was doubting myself between 2 and 4 km, but it turned out okay. I'm ecstatic to win another national title
Regina Joyce, Club Northwest, masters women's (Lynnwood, Wash.) - It's exciting to help Club Northwest defend its national masters title. It was exciting during the race to hear the race announcer say that Karen (Steen) and I were in third and fourth and our teammates were in seventh and eighth. It gave me a charge knowing the team was up there.
Peter Magill, Team Runner's High, masters men's (South Pasadena, Calif.) -The first time you run one of these things, you know it's only one year. Last year in Portland, I tripped in the middle of the race and had to fight just to get third. When I hit that last stretch with (John) Tuttle and (Scott) Bagley, I thought, 'I'm not going to wait another year to do this. I;m going to give everything I've got to get it this year.'
I didn't know over the last 20 yards whether I was going to win the race or fall on my face. Every third step, I felt that my legs were about to give out on me. Scott's team (Genesee Valley Harriers) and my team (Team Runner's High) are in a heck of a battle right now. This is the club championships, and that's what it's all about.
Elizabeth Woodworth, Wisconsin Runner RT, open women's (Baton Rouge, Louisiana) - I totally did not expect to win this coming into today. This felt so good to run the whole race with someone on me. I just wanted to feel out the competition and see where it went. This was very unexpected, and a very nice surprise.
I plan to do the 4k race in New York (at the USA Cross Country Championships) in February, as it's the last year for that race, and I'm more of a middle distance type.
Erika Aklufi, See Jane Run, open women's (Santa Monica, Calif.) - It was a great day, perfect running weather. The competition was tougher than last year, but I think we've got a shot at winning and defending our national championship. There were some full-strength East Coast teams here, so we'll see.
Matt Tegenkamp, Nike, open men's (Madison, Wisc.) - That was a tough race. I was going into this race feeling the pack, and it broke open at 7k. I've been doing a lot of base training, so I wasn't quite ready to go out this fast. Fernando Cabada and I had a great competition. He's a great competitor.
This race was just to see how my fitness was. I'll run an indoor race at the end of January and one in February, and get ready for the US cross nationals.
Brian Sell, Hanson's/Brooks Distance Project (Rochester Hills, Mich.) - It went okay for me personally. It was a little rough. I'm not much of a cross country runner, but I wanted to be here to help the team win the team title back. This is the one time of the year that we can be a team, just like in college. It's a great feeling to win as a team.
For more information on the 2005 USATF National Club Cross Country Championships, including the complete results, visit www.usatf.org.