Saturday, June 18, 2016

Linton and Skiles are masters of the melon in Monticello

The last obstacle to finishing the Monticello, Florida Kiwanis' 5K Melon Run is the hill on Water Street. Since 2007 everyone who has run the annual race has had to negotiate that climb during the final quarter mile, the equivalent of going to the top floor of a seven-story building. They all notice it, even former Florida State University distance runner Stan Linton.

"I came through three miles in 14:59," said Linton after winning the 38th annual Melon Run on Saturday morning, 18 June 2016. His final time was 15:50, so Linton covered the last uphill bit of course in 51 seconds--the same speed as an athlete struggling to break 25 minutes on a flat course.

Stan Linton
Stan Linton

Stan Linton may have felt the Water Street hill as much as the other runners, but his 15:50 was still fastest time of the morning, and the fastest time that anyone has posted at the Melon Run since the course was changed to include the Water Street hill. Brittney Skiles, a cross-country coach at Truett-McConnell University, won the women's title, placing tenth overall in 19:44.

The race started at 8:15 AM on West Washington Street with the Jefferson County Courthouse at the runners' backs. After half a kilometer a trio of athletes was out front--Stanley Linton, Wright Calhoun, and Scott Kelley. After that, though, Linton took command. The newly-commissioned US Navy Ensign was chasing the clock, with John Charlton's 1995 winning Melon Run time of 14:57 in mind.

Linton never threatened Charlton's record but still won the race by nearly 400 meters with a 15:50. "Maybe next year," said Linton.

Wright Calhoun
Wright Calhoun

Calhoun took second in 17:08. "I prefer cross-country running with hills and dirt," said Calhoun. "So I really liked the hills on this course." Calhoun recently signed to run on the cross country team at Columbus State University in the fall.

Bryce Cole, a rising senior on the Wakulla High cross country team, was third in 17:25. FAMU biostatistics professor Geb Kiros was the fastest master runner in the race, fourth overall in 17:57.

Coming from the Georgia hills around Truett-McConnell University, in the shadow of Mount Yonah, Brittney Skiles had less trouble with racing on Monticello's slopes than with racing in general.

Brittney Skiles
Brittney Skiles

"I raced for the first time in about seven months just seven days ago," said Skiles.

Skiles may have lacked testing in competition, but it didn't show. Almost immediately after the start of the race she was leading the women's field. Alli Hay and Haleigh Martin, rising seniors at Pataula Academy and Wakulla High respectively, were Skiles' closest pursuers in the early going. As the race progressed, though, Tallahassee lawyer Sheryl Rosen overtook the two high school distance runners and moved into the second woman's spot. Rosen was the 2013 Melon Run women's champ, and near the end of the 2016 race she was gaining on Skiles. At the finish line, however, Skiles' 19:44 gave her a comfortable 60-meter lead and first in the women's standings. Rosen was the women's runner-up and fourteenth overall in 20:00. Alli Hay took the third woman's spot, placing seventeenth overall in 20:24, and Haleigh Martin was fourth in the women's standings and twentieth overall in 21:17. Andrea Duffy was the top woman master and sixth female finisher, coming in 32nd overall in 23:10.

Sheryl Rosen
Sheryl Rosen

212 athletes finished the Monticello Kiwanis' 38th annual 5K Melon Run. Gulf Winds Track Club of Tallahassee chip-timed the race.

Bryce ColeTop Ten Men, 2016 Melon Run 5K
  1. 15:50 ~ Stan Linton (M, 22)
  2. 17:08 ~ Wright Calhoun (M, 18)
  3. 17:25 ~ Bryce Cole (M, 17)
  4. 17:57 ~ Geb Kiros (M, 49)
  5. 18:06 ~ Zach Deveau (M, 28)
  6. 18:28 ~ Mickey Moore (M, 46)
  7. 18:35 ~ Myles Gibson (M, 49)
  8. 18:47 ~ Beau Beard (M, 32)
  9. 18:59 ~ Eric Godin (M, 32)
  10. 19:21 ~ Lane Williams (M, 20)

Alli HayTop Ten Women, 2016 Melon Run 5K
  1. 19:44 ~ Brittney Skiles (F, 27)
  2. 20:00 ~ Sheryl Rosen (F, 32)
  3. 20:24 ~ Alli Hay (F, 17)
  4. 21:17 ~ Haleigh Martin (F, 16)
  5. 23:01 ~ Kaitlin Jackson (F, 23)
  6. 23:10 ~ Andrea Duffy (F, 40)
  7. 23:39 ~ Paula O'Neill (F, 54)
  8. 24:42 ~ Shelby Augustyniak (F, 40)
  9. 25:25 ~ Julia Sura (F, 44)
  10. 25:34 ~ Sloan Beard (F, 27)

Known winners of the Monticello Melon Run 5K, 1979 - 2016
23 June 197915:39, Gary Slayton20:36, Carolyn Crochet
28 June 198015:28, Gary Slayton19:49, Debbie Dickson

19 June 198215:10, Andy Whitener17:38, Laura Ledbetter
18 June 1983
23 June 198415:37, Gary Slayton19:45, Cindy Walker
22 June 198516:09, Felton Wright19:12, Barbara Balzer
21 June 198615:55, Bill Crooks18:32, Karen MacHarg
20 June 198716:14, Bill Crooks19:33, Peggy Johnson257
25 June 198815:47, Bill Crooks18:18, Karen MacHarg324
24 June 198915:02, Jeff Pigg19:05, Vikki Saga
23 June 199015:20, Jessie Close18:06, Karen MacHarg
22 June 199115:23, Phillip Rowan19:34, Vikki Saga
20 June 199215:10, Jessie Close18:35, Lynda Nilges386
26 June 199316:07, Bill Crooks19:37, Sue Kany
29 June 199416:13, Gary Droze18:49, Sarah Heeb
24 June 199514:57, John Charlton19:54, Sissi Carroll
22 June 1996

28 June 1997

27 June 199816:33, Tommy Kunish17:51, Sarah Docter-Williams
26 June 199916:23, Tommy Kunish21:05, Peggy Simpson193
17 June 200017:08, Tim Simpkins18:32, Kim Winn141
16 June 200116:29, Ryan Deak17:54, Sarah Docter-Williams238
22 June 200217:54, Doug Gorton21:41, Laura Atlee139
21 June 2003

19 June 200417:18, Tim Unger20:30, Kate Remillard121
18 June 200518:31, Jack McDermott18:07, Sarah Docter-Williams123
17 June 200617:36, Nathan Haskins22:35, Loranne Ausley170
16 June 200716:28, Nathan Haskins18:50, Sarah Docter-Williams261
21 June 200816:08, Nathan Haskins20:16, Deb Jones194
20 June 200916:54, Charlie Johnson23:49, Sandy Holt267
19 June 201018:07, Gabriel Leitz19:59, Micah Adriani283
18 June 201116:38, Sammy Palmer19:28, Katie Showman258
16 June 201216:28, Stephen Cox18:59, Seeley Gutierrez379
15 June 201316:42, Stanley Linton18:49, Sheryl Rosen284
21 June 201416:17, Chris Lake19:08, Seeley Gutierrez244
20 June 201518:03, Roger Schmidt20:49, Teresa Ristow232
18 June 201615:50, Stanley Linton19:44, Brittney Skiles212
Thank you to Pat Dugan for providing information about the 1987 race.


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