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Sunday, March 11, 2001 -- Uniontown, PA
Boston Beanery St. Patricks Day 5K (iPO Event Id#: 3145)
Story and photos by Dave McKain

[Details] [Coverage]
[Overall Results]
Pictures: [Set 1] [Set 2] [Set 3] [Set 4] [Set 5] [Set 6] [Set 7]

Race Pic
Mike Bittner fronts the lead group
Runners and walkers braved the blustery winds in Uniontown in the Boston Beanery 5K Run/Walk around the Uniontown Mall. As it always seems to be in running, crosswinds and headwinds heavily outweighed tailwinds and made the 40 degree temperature seem more like 25 degrees. The course was relatively flat considering the hilly terrain around Uniontown. Racers started in the Mall parking lot and headed out along the perimeter road for about 1/2 lap before heading out for a short jaunt through the neighborhood. Then it was back to the Mall for 1 3/4 laps around the perimeter before the last 0.1 miles to the finish in from of the Beanery.

Race Pic
Smiling despite the chilly winds
From the start, Mike Bittner (17:20) took a lead he would not relinquish throughout the race. Following closely behind Bittner and battling for second were Laurel Highland HS Junior cross country runner Adam Shinsky along with Connelsville runner and 2000 Anchor Glass/Rolling Rock 5K winner Brad Herrington. While Herrington (17:46) put on a valiant effort, it was Shinsky taking the race for second place (17:39). In a battle for 4th, David Madison (17:18) nipped Rick Brooks (17:19) by 4/10ths of a second. The young legs put on a show as 5 of the top 10 places were taken by the 15-19 age group but they better not be complacent as the older folks start to emerge from their winter hibernation. In addition, Laurel Highland got bragging rights over Uniontown High for the time being in the battle of the XC teams. Connelsville's Ashleigh Hawk (20:50) edged Morgantown's Maria Stover (20:55) to take first place honors in the womens class while Keri Miller (21:17) took third.

Race Pic
Steve Bence sets a blistering pace for the walkers
In the 5K walk, Steve Bence set a brutal pace from the start. Not far behind Bence, Ken James knew he would have to come up with a strong race to pull off the pass. Jamie Brooks noted Bence's knack for strong starts - and the difficulty in catching him once he got out there. At the finish line, it was Bence taking the win with a time of 27:23 followed by James (28:07) and Ron Brooks (28:49). In the womens class it was Jamie Brooks (28:56) taking 1st (4th overall) followed by Kathy Paes (33:12) in second and Bonnie Whitby (35:57) in third.

The 220 runners and walkers retired to the Mall court where plaques were awarded along with refreshments. Proceeds from the race benefitted the Fayette County Community Action Agency and it Homeless & Near Homeless Programs. Helping make the event possible were:

  • American Ambulance Service
  • Boston Beanery
  • Crown American Security
  • Culligan (Trilli Holdings, Inc)
  • Fayco Rentals
  • Fayette County Commissioners
  • FCCAA Safety Pin Club
  • ]Fayette Striders
  • FROGGY 94.9/98.3 FM
  • Senator Richard Kasunic
  • Lash's Sporting Goods
  • Ohiopyle Prints
  • Pennsylvania American Water Co.
  • SERJ
  • Shamrock Produce
  • Uniontown Mall