Kristen Buckwalter of Homer runs to victory in the Half Marathon at the Kenai River Marathon on Sunday, Sept. 29, 2019, in Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Kristen Buckwalter of Homer runs to victory in the Half Marathon at the Kenai River Marathon on Sunday, Sept. 29, 2019, in Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Runners conquer rain, wind at Kenai River Marathon

A women’s running group from Homer, a pair prepping for the California International Marathon, and rainy, windy conditions prevailed Sunday at the Kenai River Marathon.

Just under 200 runners, including relay teams, battled the increasingly taxing conditions at the race, which ran on an entirely new course this year due to road construction. Last year, the event had 260 runners.

Instead of starting at the Kenai Visitors and Cultural Center and looping back via Beaver Loop or the Unity Trail, half marathoners and marathoners started at the Soldotna Regional Sports Complex this year. Half marathoners ran to the Visitors and Cultural Center, while marathoners ran to the Escape Route via Marathon Road before returning to Kenai.

Marathon titles went to Jason Parks of Soldotna and Stacey Buckelew of Homer, while the half marathon champs were Marshall Genn of Anchorage and Kristen Buckwalter of Homer.

Mallory Millay and Daniel Anders won the 5K race, while Marathon Red, the team of Lisa Juliussen, Benjamin McGarry, Brian Baker and Gabe Juliussen, took the relay.

Homer women had a big day, taking two of the top four slots in the half marathon and three of the top four in the marathon.

Buckwalter chased down Heather Moon of Kenai to win the half marathon at 1 hour, 39 minutes, 7 seconds, while Jennifer Flanagan of Eagle River was second at 1:39:16, Moon was third at 1:39:48 and Homer’s Julia Ruimveld was fourth in 1:45:38.

Buckelew won the marathon at 3:27:30, while Homer’s Elizabeth Roedl was second at 3:40:01, Kenai’s Emily Heale was third at 3:41:08 and Homer’s Danielle Meyers was fourth at 3:41:53.

Buckwalter started running longer distances about 14 months ago. Roedl, an old friend from high school, asked her to run 13 miles after a tough boot camp at a local gym. Buckwalter agreed to run 6 miles and quickly fell in with a group of about seven Homer women that do a long run once a week.

“I was training with my friends for the full marathon, but had some health issues and decided to do the half instead,” said Buckwalter, who now has three half marathons and a full under her belt this summer. “I’m glad I did.”

Buckwalter said she’d had dehydration issues at races in the past, so the rain, which didn’t turn heavy until she was off the course, was not a problem. She passed Moon with less than a mile left.

“I wanted to win,” she said when asked about her finishing kick. “It was purely determination to win.”

Buckelew, 40, is also part of the training group. The rain turned heavy while she was on the course, causing some marathoners to finish shaking uncontrollably. But Buckelew finished and within minutes was ready for an interview.

“She’s probably one of the toughest girls I know,” Roedl, 36, said.

Buckelew, who won the Hatcher Pass Marathon last year and the Homer Half Marathon this year, had an easy explanation.

“We live in Alaska, right?” she said. “We’re used to these conditions.”

And Buckelew didn’t even have the runners as the toughest ones out there Sunday.

“Thanks to all the volunteers,” she said. “They had the tough job of keeping us going. We appreciate what they did for us.”

Roedl was running her third marathon this summer. She said she got her toughness from her adventuring father, Peter Roedl of Homer.

“I grew up with a dad who made us do something no matter the weather,” she said.

The half marathon and marathon started at the same time. Parks, 31, and Genn, 29, quickly bolted from the pack and took control of their respective races. Genn then started pulling away from Parks about 6 miles in.

Both are eyeing the California International Marathon in December in Sacramento. The event is known for drawing a bunch of fast runners, so it’s a great chance to put up a fast time.

Genn moved to Alaska a little over a year ago and is loving it. He won the Hatcher Pass Marathon this summer.

“I was using this as a training run,” he said. “There’s only so many races in the fall in Southcentral.”

Genn would love to run under 2:40 in California. He finished at 1:19:30 on Sunday, with Soldotna’s Ken Youngberg in second at 1:31:20, Anchorage’s Ian Marks in third at 1:37:06 and Soldotna’s Lee Frey in fourth at 1:38:47.

While Genn was able to get off the course before the heavy rains came, Parks was headed out Marathon Road when he got swamped. There was no rain at the start, so Parks discarded his arm warmers and gloves and ran in just a singlet and tight shorts.

He just moved to Soldotna from Atlanta in July to work as a radiation oncologist at Peninsula Radiation Oncology Center, so he was noticeably shivering by the time he crossed the line.

But Parks, who ran at Division III Centre College in Kentucky, emerged from this Alaska experience ready for more.

“I didn’t decide until early this week to do this, because I had some nagging injuries,” he said. “But right now everything feels fine and I’m looking to that marathon in December.”

Beyond that, Parks said he would like to try cross-country skiing this winter, as well as some of Alaska’s famed trail and mountain races, including the Mount Marathon Race, in the future.

Parks won at 2:46:04, while Anchorage’s Rob Dolan was second at 3:06:09 and Anchorage’s Kyle Emery was third at 3:10:12.

Kenai River Marathon

Saturday

WOMEN

Marathon (26.2 miles)

1. Stacey Buckelew, Homer, 3 hours, 27 minutes, 30 seconds; 2. Elizabeth Roedl, Homer, 3:40:01; 3. Emily Heale, Kenai, 3:41:08; 4. Danielle Meyers, Homer, 3:41:53; 5. Sarah Webster, Anchorage, 3:53:21; 6. Teal Hall, Moose Pass, 3:55:23; 7. Erica McCaslin, Anchorage, 4:02:14; 8. Kristy Berington, Wasilla, 4:03:01; 9. Yekaterina Petrova, Parker, Colorado, 4:07:26; 10. Krista Karstensen, JBER, 4:14:13; 11. Liz Raines, Anchorage, 4:24:25; 12. Rebecca Jeter, Anchorage, 4:26:34; 13. Jennifer Booz, Homer, 4:26:57; 14. Christina Morgan, Eagle River, 4:41:13; 15 (tie). Sarah Hurkett, Eagle River, Kamie Miller, Eagle River, 4:41:14; 17. Hilary Krueger, Asheville, North Carolina, 4:47:27; 18. Chisato Johnson, Kasilof, 4:51:49; 19. Hannah Krause, Wasilla, 4:53:38; 20. Janelle Hames, Sterling, 4:58:26; 21. Kathleen Bellant, North Pole, 5:08:38; 22. Zoe Nelson, Palmer, 5:28:30; 23. Jennifer Smith-Morris, Palmer, 5:28:30; 24. Colleen Moore, Midlothian, 5:43:11; 25. Emily Reast, Anchorage, 6:11:36; 26. Madeline Warschak, Anchorage, 7:22:10.

Half Marathon (13.1 miles)

1. Kristen Buckwalter, Homer, 1:39:07; 2. Jennifer Flanagan, Eagle River, 1:39:16; 3. Heather Moon, Kenai, 1:39:48; 4. Julia Ruimveld, Homer, 1:45:38; 5. Petra Richards, Willow, 1:48:42; 6. Amanda Day, Eagle River, 1:50:07; 7. Brianne Rahn, Barksdale AF, 1:51:45; 8. Elizabeth Hardie, Soldotna, 1:51:46; 9. Deann Denter, Eagle River, 1:52:54; 10. Megan Murphy, Soldotna, 1:56:27; 11. Holly Dickson, Homer, 1:56:31; 12. Michelle Cox, Anchorage, 1:56:53; 13. Anna Taylor, Anchorage, 1:57:47; 14. Christine Jones, Sutton, 1:59:16; 15. Callie Wilder, Anchorage, 2:00:53; 16. Devin Drake, Seward, 2:03:10; 17. Katie Adams, Anchorage, 2:03:57; 18. Stephanie Mathew, Eagle River, 2:04:26; 19. Kohlton Rhoda, Soldotna, 2:05:18; 20. Sara Bundy, Soldotna, 2:07:04; 21. Lila Johnson, Homer, 2:08:34; 22. Erika Fitzgerald, Fritz Creek, 2:08:44; 23. Tara Beth Wade, Homer, 2:09:35; 24. Susan Longacre, Anchorage, 2:10:38; 25. Linnea Mario, Eagle River, 2:15:59.

26. June Stuckey, Soldotna, 2:16:12; 27. Megan Jenks, Anchorage, 2:17:33; 28. Jen Novobilski, Anchorage, 2:17:55; 29. Marisol Serna, Anchorage, 2:18:10; 30. Elizabeth Appleby, Soldotna, 2:18:51; 31. Ana Wirta, JBER, 2:18:56; 32. Alane Hughes, Soldotna, 2:19:19; 33. Kelly Murray, Edinburg, Virginia, 2:20:43; 34. Joanna Lusk, Anchorage, 2:25:50; 35. Meghan Fielder, Anchorage, 2:27:32; 36. Dana Strager, Anchorage, 2:27:34; 37. Barbara Hrubesh, Wasilla, 2:29:15; 38. Vivian Hemphill, Eagle River, 2:29:52; 39. April Park, Eagle River, 2:29:52; 40. Copper Fuller, Kenai, 2:32:38; 41. Jennifer Thomsen, Kenai, 2:36:00; 42. Sarah Pribbenow, Kenai, 2:36:28; 43. Antonya Hall, Kenai, 2:36:28; 44. Jacqueline Kane, Wasilla, 2:41:09; 45. Elizabeth Cox, Nikiski, 2:41:39; 46. Margret Nelson, Kenai, 2:41:40; 47. Mollie Pate, Soldotna, 2:41:40; 48. Jolene McDowell, Wasilla, 2:45:08; 49. Marly Perschbacher, Sterling, 2:48:19; 50. Amanda Ritchie, Kenai, 2:51:57.

51. Jamie Beever, Soldotna, 2:58:17; 52. Kathryn DiPanfilo, Chandler, Arizona, 2:59:30; 53. Laura Williams, Anchorage, 3:00:07; 54. Adrienne Keck, Eagle River, 3:11:50; 55. Denise Baldwin, Anchorage, 3:16:24; 56. Leslie Rabang, Anchorage, 3:16:25; 57. Christina Lam, Anchorage, 3:24:29; 58. Nancy Lafferty, Kansas City, 3:24:35.

5K (3.1 miles)

1. Mallory Millay, Soldotna, 24:58; 2. Jenna Brown, Kenai, 25:41; 3. Amanda Millay, Soldotna, 26:33; 4. Karalyn Veihdeffer, 26:33; 5. Kandi Barcus, Kenai, 31:10; 6. Channa Rist, Seward, 31:28; 7. Eliza Anders, Kenai, 31:53; 8. Tamara Hibberd, Kenai, 31:55; 9. Emily Knight, Soldotna, 32:39; 10. Viorica Thomson, Kenai, 32:53; 11. Tina Hensley, Soldotna, 32:54; 12. Sheilah-Margaret Pothast, Soldotna, 33:14; 13. Melanie Hollon, Sterling, 34:52; 14. Maria Sweppy, Soldotna, 37:02; 15. Debbie Cook, Willow, 37:30; 16. Caroline Botheras, Nacogdoches, 37:39; 17. Stephanie Walker, Hartwell, Georgia, 38:37; 18. Mary Ranspot, Dallas, 42:02; 19. Valerie Werner, San Antonio, 44:26; 20. Diane Nickell, Wasilla, 45:37.

MEN

Marathon (26.2 miles)

1. Jason Parks, Soldotna, 2:46:04; 2. Rob Dolan, Anchorage, 3:06:09; 3. Kyle Emery, Anchorage, 3:10:12; 4. Stan Wharry, Palmer, 3:13:41; 5. Connor Priest, Anchorage, 3:26:51; 6. J.R. Snow, Soldotna, 3:50:28; 7. Raymond-A. Gallardo, Denver, 3:55:40; 8. James Ranspot, Dallas, 3:58:15; 9. Brian Laurencelle, Anchorage, 3:59:50; 10. Michael Minchaca, Anchorage, 4:02:43; 11. Lyle Swallows, Wasilla, 4:04:12; 12. Dean Denter, Eagle River, 4:04:27; 13. Mikel Salzetti, Kenai, 4:40:27; 14. Brandon Wood, Anchorage, 4:41:14; 15. Michael Fisher, Anchorage, 4:41:14; 16. Joe Feaser, Richmond, Virginia, 4:44:46; 17. Adam Carpenter, Wasilla, 4:56:05; 18. Joe Goeman, Palmer, 4:56:06; 19. Wade Walker, Hartwell, Georgia, 4:59:17; 20. Thomas Ball, Anchorage, 5:58:18; 21. Ezra Hogue-Corwin, Anchorage, 6:11:20; 22. Austin Martin, Clam Gulch, 6:24:30.

Half Marathon (13.1 miles)

1. Marshall Genn, Anchorage, 1:19:30; 2. Ken Youngberg, Soldotna, 1:31:20; 3. Ian Marks, Anchorage, 1:37:06; 4. Lee Frey, Soldotna, 1:38:47; 5. Sean Goff, Kenai, 1:39:18; 6. Don Connelly, Soldotna, 1:40:20; 7. Delbert Leavitt, Seward, 1:42:13; 8. George Skene, Clarkston, 1:42:54; 9. Jordan Watson, Juneau, 1:43:05; 10. Joey Klecka, Kenai, 1:43:07; 11. Kevin Barnett, Round Hill, 1:43:10; 12. John McGlasson, Kenai, 1:44:31; 13. David Keating, Scottsdale, 1:45:09; 14. Ryan Marquis, Kenai, 1:46:59; 15. Larry Nickell, Wasilla, 1:49:19; 16. Kevin Lauver, Soldotna, 1:49:42; 17. Walter Moore, Kasilof, 1:54:02; 18. Nicholas Chapman, Nikiski, 1:54:28; 19. Carl Kincaid, Sterling, 1:54:56; 20. Rob Larson, Everett, Washington, 1:56:08; 21. Larry Tews, Soldotna, 1:56:21; 22. Roy Stuckey, Soldotna, 1:58:49; 23. Chad Arthur, Soldotna, 1:59:02; 24. Samuel Anders, Kenai, 2:00:36; 25. Elias Wheeler, Soldotna, 2:08:04.

26. Perry VanderKop, Whitehorse, 2:08:39; 27. Bob Ball, Kasilof, 2:18:43; 28. Brian Walch, Anchorage, 2:20:05; 29. Jeff Perschbacher, Sterling, 2:48:19; 30. Robert Weathers Jr., Salcha, 2:57:24.

5K (3.1 miles)

1. Daniel Anders, Kenai, 24:32; 2. Luke Morse, Soldotna, 24:56; 3. Jacob Ross, Soldotna, 27:48; 4. Teddy Dodge, Kenai, 32:39; 5. John Pothast, Soldotna, 33:15; 6. Rick Botheras, Nacodoches, 33:49; 7. Jorge Garcia, Kenai, 33:59; 8. Jim Murphy, Bryan, Texas, 35:41; 9. Raymond Gallardo, Denver, Colorado, 1:02:40.

RELAY

26.2 miles

1. Marathon Red (Lisa Juliussen, Benjamin McGarry, Brian Baker, Gabe Juliussen), Soldotna, 3:21:16; 2. Purple Reign (Bailey Beeson, Kailey Mucha, Megan Smith, Ken Felchle), Soldotna, 3:33:47; 3. Latte Runs (Kali Bull, Lena Reisterer, Nikki Bull, Jody Otto), Palmer, 4:01:05; 4. Quivering Quads (Valerie Weathers, Kenji Alejandre, Jared Oleson, Joshua Lewis), Salcha, 4:24:31; 5. Mountain View Elementary Rocks (Kristin Morrow, Cynthia Fudzinski, Nadia Anders, Jenna Fabian), Kenai, 4:25:24; 6. Chafing the dream (Alyssa Vanek, Jayme Jones, Lindsey Bray, Sarah Hobart), Soldotna, 4:41:07; 7. AK Sole Sisters (Katie Evans, Erika Smith, Kristen Russell, Laurie Winslow), Soldotna, 4:58:09; 8. In it to Finish (Amy Warfle, Amy Baxter, Yvonne Oren, Penny Furnish), Kenai, 5:29:33.

Anchorage’s Kyle Emery, running the Marathon, leads Kenai’s Sean Goff, running the Half Marathon, Sunday, Sept. 29, 2019, in the Kenai River Marathon in Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Anchorage’s Kyle Emery, running the Marathon, leads Kenai’s Sean Goff, running the Half Marathon, Sunday, Sept. 29, 2019, in the Kenai River Marathon in Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion 
                                Anchorage’s Marshall Genn leads Soldotna’s Jason Parks on Sunday, Sept. 29, 2019, at the Kenai River Marathon in Alaska. Genn won the Half Marathon, while Parks won the Marathon.

Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion Anchorage’s Marshall Genn leads Soldotna’s Jason Parks on Sunday, Sept. 29, 2019, at the Kenai River Marathon in Alaska. Genn won the Half Marathon, while Parks won the Marathon.

Homer’s Elizabeth Roedl and Homer’s Stacey Buckelew compete in the Kenai River Marathon on Sunday, Sept. 29, 2019, in Alaska. Buckelew won the Marathon, while Roedl was second. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Homer’s Elizabeth Roedl and Homer’s Stacey Buckelew compete in the Kenai River Marathon on Sunday, Sept. 29, 2019, in Alaska. Buckelew won the Marathon, while Roedl was second. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Homer’s Elizabeth Roedl and Homer’s Stacey Buckelew compete in the Kenai River Marathon on Sunday, Sept. 29, 2019, in Alaska. Buckelew won the Marathon, while Roedl was second. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

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