Sunday, August 21, 2011

Rice goes for three and Helton for two at VSU Community 5K

VSU Community 5K course mapThe first Valdosta State University Community 5K started out in 2006 as the VSU Centennial 5K in honor of Valdosta State's 100th anniversary. After a couple of years it became clear that the 100th anniversary was over and the current name was adopted. If VSU Campus Recreation is considering another name change, they might consider calling their race the Chris Rice 5K. Rice has won the last three VSU Community 5K races, half of the six that have been held, and holds the event record of 16:15 that he set in 2009. Rice's wins include the most recent VSU Community 5K, staged on Saturday morning, 20 August 2011, where he ran 17:03, eight seconds ahead of the runner-up, Jesse Prince (2nd, 17:11), one of Rice's VSU cross-country teammates.


Blazer cross-country runners dominated the race, taking five of the top six places. Following Rice and Prince across the line were fellow Blazers D. J. Smith (3rd, 17:20), Ryan Winkel (4th, 17:46), and Marc Kaiser (6th, 18:10). If it were a cross-country meet, VSU would have scored 16 points, with only the Masked Avenger (5th, 17:56) keeping the Blazers from a perfect score of 15. The fastest master in the race was Dan Anderson of Perry, Florida, who finished tenth overall in 19:43.


Senior-year Blazer runner Jordanne Helton represented her team well in the women's division, posting a 20:23 to take the title. It was Helton's second Community 5K win, following her with her 20:12 victory in 2008. Valwood ace Mary Alice Smoot finished runner-up, placing 14th overall in 21:06. A few seconds back at 21:17, Bleckley County High alumna Taylor Harrington finished 16th overall and third in the women's race. Valdosta's Mary Smoot was the fourth woman in and the first woman master, 18th overall in 21:21.


The VSU Community 5K is staged annually by Valdosta State University Campus Recreation. The organization is also responsible for the VSU Homecoming 5K and the VSU Turkey Trot 10K as well as a variety of non-running events. The next road race in Valdosta, Georgia will be the third annual Valdosta Labor Day 5K on, of course, Labor Day (Monday, 5 September 2011).


Top Ten Men, sixth annual VSU Community 5K
  1. 17:03 ~ Christopher Rice (M, 22) Valdosta, GA
  2. 17:11 ~ Jesse Prince (M, 19) Valdosta, GA
  3. 17:20 ~ DJ Smith (M, 23) Valdosta, GA
  4. 17:46 ~ Ryan Winkel (M, 20) Valdosta, GA
  5. 17:56 ~ Masked Avenger (M, 32) Valdosta, GA
  6. 18:10 ~ Marc Kaiser (M, 21) Valdosta, GA
  7. 18:34 ~ David Burnett (M, 35) Valdosta, GA
  8. 19:39 ~ Tyler Thurman (M, 15) Valdosta, GA
  9. 19:43 ~ Ryan Ewald (M, 21) Valdosta, GA
  10. 19:43 ~ Dan Anderson (M, 47) Perry, FL

Top Ten Women, sixth annual VSU Community 5K
  1. 20:23 ~ Jordanne Helton (F, 21) Valdosta, GA
  2. 21:06 ~ Mary Alice Smoot (F, 15) Valdosta, GA
  3. 21:17 ~ Taylor Harrington (F, 18) Valdosta, GA
  4. 21:21 ~ Alice Smoot (F, 54) Valdosta, GA
  5. 21:31 ~ Ashley Luther (F, 19) Valdosta, GA
  6. 23:04 ~ Alecia Beck (F, 24) Valdosta, GA
  7. 23:29 ~ Grace Doepker (F, 22) Hahira, GA
  8. 23:35 ~ Sandy Gamino (F, 19) Valdosta, GA
  9. 23:48 ~ April Meeks (F, 20) Valdosta, GA
  10. 23:50 ~ Lisa Connelly (F, 19) Valdosta, GA

Valdosta State University Community 5K champions, 2006-2011
Date
MenWomen
19 August 2006
Derek Storbeck (16:54)
Melissa Daugherty (20:06)
18 August 2007
John Seppala (16:58)
Jana Grygarova (20:12)
23 August 2008
Austin McDonald (17:17)
Jordanne Helton (20:12)
22 August 2009
Christopher Rice (16:15)
Ashley McGee (20:03)
21 August 2010
Christopher Rice (16:40)
Sarah Turner (20:13)
20 August 2011
Christopher Rice (17:03)
Jordanne Helton (20:23)


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