June 17, 2018
Rothrock State Forest

by Mike Casper

Ma Nature took a break between rainstorms and scorching heat to allow cooler than usual temperatures as runners headed up the long climb on Seeger Road in Rothrock State Forest that starts the scenic Eager Seeger Half Marathon. Overcast skies gave way to summer sun an hour in, and the numerous shaded sections along the course became mini-sanctuaries from the heat.

Loc O, Shundai Li, Steve Templin and course record holder Patrick Singletary led early on, with O finishing with just a 24-second lead. Li took second and Templin third.

Harriet Smith was the first woman to finish, with Nicole Yokum just 1:19 behind in second and Sierra Downs third. Downs led through the long initial hill, after which Smith and Yokum caught up. Downs then ran about 7 miles with Alan Effrig. “I had a great time at the race! I loved the course,” said Downs.

Yokum had run the Rothrock Trail Challenge the weekend before, and had been hoping to do a group run around Tussey over the weekend, but saw on Friday that the race was happening and decided at the last minute to do it.

“Harriet was running a bit ahead of me after that,” recalled Yokum, “I caught up to her at water stop 2 (about 7.2 miles) but then she got away from me again.” Yokum said she was missing her standard last-third-of-the-race kick on this day.

“I felt pretty good,” said Smith, “it is a great run and I really enjoyed the hills: challenging, but at least what goes up has to come down!”

Five runners completed all 5 “official” Tussey Teasers, earning a complimentary treat from Coldstone Creamery: Evan Bresler, Jacob Gordon, David Lloyd, Jim Maras and Steve Templin (Evan also ran the optional February 3 race, a snowy Tussey Teaser #0). David won the draw (again!) for the grand prize, an ice cream cake, but gave it to Jim in recognition of Father’s Day. Jim and daughter Victoria ran today.

Race Director Mike Casper and runner Patrick Applegate ran this race to raise funds for Centre Volunteers in Medicine. Donations supporting Mike or Patrick’s run can still be made through June 30 at http://www.cvim.net/the-marathon-runners/. For more details on CVIM’s work, visit http://www.cvim.net/.

A huge thank you is due to several volunteers for their time and enthusiasm: Maureen Kelliher for picking up and delivering the Subway subs to Alan Seeger; Susan and David Beyerle Crowe for enthusiastically staffing aid station 1, and Steve Baird for station 2; and Brent, Barb, Natalie and Aiden Kelsey for valiant finish line duty, with photos by Natalie and inspiring signs and decorations by Aiden.

Special thanks to CaliKline - Re/MAX Centre Realty and Subway Restaurants for their enthusiastic support of this series.

Runners should also note that the 2017 Discovery Training Series, beginning in August, will cover the entire 50 miles of the Tussey mOUnTaiNBACK course via an 8-week series of low-key group runs. Check this schedule later in the summer for potential changes. It will provide run distances, locations and driving directions: http://tusseymountainback.com/events/mountainback-discovery-series

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Loc O held of Shundai Li to win by 24 seconds!

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Shundai Li

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Harriet Smith was the top woman finisher

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Nicole Yokum was second among women

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Sierra Downs came in third among women

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Race Director Mike Casper (here seemingly spurred on by a passing car) shaved time off his last two years’ efforts on this course.

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Austin Boyle and his pup Vera complete the route. Vera was ready for more.

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Carolyn Triozzi was still fresh after the course’s rolling terrain.

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Victoria Maras finishes strong

Overall Order of Finish


Place   First          Last         Age  Sex Town           State   Time
-----   -----          ----         ---  --- ----           -----   ----
1       Loc            O             41   M  Williamsburg    PA    1:27:58
2       Shundai        Li            45   M  State College   PA    1:28:22
3       Steve          Templin       45   M  Muncy           PA    1:33:25
4       Patrick        Singletary    52   M  State College   PA    1:36:22
5       Harriet        Smith         25   F  Boalsburg       PA    1:37:17
6       Nicole         Yokum         34   F  State College   PA    1:38:36
7       Sierra         Downs         21   F  State College   PA    1:41:39
8       Alan           Effrig        39   M  State College   PA    1:41:56
9       Matt           Balogh        19   M  State College   PA    1:42:50
10      Anthony        Degleris      20   M  State College   PA    1:42:50
11      Matthew        Beyerle       21   M  State College   PA    1:42:50
12      Robert         Wymond        55   M  Camberwell      Aus   1:54:18
13      Matt           Smith         51   M  State College   PA    1:58:38
14      Christopher    Updegrove     41   M  Port Matilda    PA    2:02:26
15      Jim            Maras         56   M  State College   PA    2:02:28
16      Evan           Bresler       35   M  PA Furnace      PA    2:02:58
17      Mike           Casper        59   M  State College   PA    2:06:18
18      Christian      Kurpiel-Waka  39   M  State College   PA    2:08:09
19      Austin         Boyle         34   M  Lemont          PA    2:09:02
20      Victoria        Maras        20   F  State College   PA    2:09:41
21      Jeff           Schiesler     62   M  Port Matilda    PA    2:10:24
22      Ron            Burket        58   M  Philipsburg     PA    2:14:04
23      Jacob          Gordon        30   M  Huntingdon      PA    2:15:09
24      Regina         Lozinski      39   F  Port Matilda    PA    2:17:00
25      George         Conrad        41   M  Huntingdon      PA    2:17:00
26      Jim            Hahn          41   M  Millerstown     PA    2:18:24
27      Lindsay        Hahn          41   F  Millerstown     PA    2:18:24
28      Carolyn        Triozzi       42   F  State College   PA    2:23:01
29      Barry          Kernfeld      67   M  State College   PA    2:31:48
30      Patrick        Applegate     37   M  State College   PA    2:32:33
31      David          Lloyd         47   M  State College   PA    2:32:55