June 6, 2021
Rothrock State Forest
by Mike Casper

mettle – vigor and strength of spirit or temperament; staying quality

A cool breeze and warming temps let the runners gathered at Colyer Lake know that summer is here.

Today’s run was much warmer than the ideal conditions of the 2019 race. Still, two runners retired the record set that year by Joseph Clark, won this year by Joseph Clark, knocking 40 seconds off his mark despite the heat. Matt Balogh and Loc O rounded out the top three men.

Running in Rothrock is nothing short of magical, with magic changing with the seasons too. Today’s run, besides featuring a gentle breeze and lots of shade, for this runner included lots of wildlife, including caterpillars (some sleeping in the road), a mouse, a chipmunk, a garter snake, a millipede, and numerous bird calls, and that was only on the way out. The way back featured a box turtle crossing the road and a row of chickens crossing too. I’ve seen bears when setting up in previous years, but there were none today.

Baylee Robey, Natasha Fedkin and Marisa Deichert were the top three women finishers.

Mike Vail won the furthest trekker to run, coming in from Baltimore. Mike is registered for the Tussey mOUnTaiNBACK’s celebrated 50-mile ultramarathon, which has a revised date of Oct. 31, 2021 on account of changes in the local football schedule. Mike plans to return June 27 for the Eager Seeger Half Marathon, to experience more of the course firsthand before his first full go-round.

Five runners have run all of the “official” Tussey Teasers #1 through #4 so far, and two of these also ran the “bonus” Teaser #0. All five are in the running for a “grand prize” to be awarded on June 27 after the final Teaser, the Eager Seeger Half Marathon. Those five are: Matt Balogh, Elijah Kamermans, David Lloyd, Natasha Tirko and Sherry Tirko. The indefatigable Tirkos ran the February ‘Sno Big Deal race.

Special thanks to Nicole Pote and Ken Farnsworth’s fiancée Megan for finish line assistance, and to Nicole for photos.

Thanks to Appalachian Outdoors and Doan’s Bones for donated prize items.

The final Tussey Teaser of the season, the Eager Seeger Half Marathon, will take place on June 27. 
ESHM performance shirts will be available (for $10). Send a note to Mike at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by
June 12 to reserve yours.

For full race details and directions, visit

Race start: It was a hot one!

First three finishers (l-r): Matt Balogh, Joseph Clark and Loc O

Baylee Robey was first woman and 6th overall finisher

                                                      Patrick Singletary was the first over-50 finisher and 7th overall

Sean Devlin takes his last step at Colyer Lake to finish 4th overall

Garrison Famiglio finished 5th overall and was the youngest runner today

Natasha Fedkin and Marisa Deichert were 2nd and 3rd women and tied for 8th overall

Thanks to Nicole, Mike Casper managed to jump in and run the race

Overall Order of Finish

Place    First          Last                   Sex  Age  Town           State   Time
-----    -----          ----                   ---  ---  ----           -----   ----
    1    Joseph         Clark                   M    27  State College   PA    1:03:39
    2    Matt           Balogh                  M    22  State College   PA    1:04:08
    3    Loc            O                       M    44  State College   PA    1:07:16
    4    Sean           Devlin                  M    42  State College   PA    1:17:40
    5    Garrison       Famiglio                M    18  State College   PA    1:17:51
    6    Baylee         Robey                   F    23  State College   PA    1:18:26
    7    Patrick        Singletary              M    55  State College   PA    1:20:50
    8    Natasha        Fedkin                  F    22  State College   PA    1:25:32
    9    Marisa         Deichert                F    23  State College   PA    1:25:32
   10    Mark           Fedkin                  M    51  State College   PA    1:25:53
   11    Elijah         Kamermans               M    35  State College   PA    1:26:16
   12    Doug           Schunk                  M    39  State College   PA    1:27:16
   13    Ken            Farnsworth              M    31  Boalsburg       PA    1:27:35
   14    Sherry         Tirko                   F    47  Warriors Mark   PA    1:29:48
   15    Mike           Vail                    M    50  Parkville       MD    1:30:57
   16    Jennifer       Harris                  F    24  State College   PA    1:34:04
   17    Jim            Maras                   M    59  State College   PA    1:42:07
   18    Mike           Casper                  M    62  State College   PA    1:47:49
   19    Natasha        Tirko                   F    36  State College   PA    1:51:55
   20    David          Lloyd                   M    51  State College   PA    2:11:52