FEBRUARY FREEZE 5K WINNER
JEFF CRAHALLA.

Crahalla Makes it Four in a Row

BY SANDRA HOWARD

TUNKHANNOCK, PA--Competing in his 4th consecutive February Freeze 5K, Jeff Crahalla, 27, made February 3, 2001 his own special day. Winning the 14th Annual February Freeze with a time of 17:30, the Wilkes-Barre resident seems to have found a race that suits his winning style. Crahalla's win was not effortless this year, however, as the total number of race participants was back to its normal level, after a lean year in 2000. Among those familiar faces from past Freezes was current male--and Masters male--record holder, Tom Carter, 48, from Johnson City, NY. Carter managed to show he is still very competitive, allowing only one runner, Tyler Spencer, 16, from Towanda, to squeeze in between him and Crahalla. Carter crossed the line in 17:53 for third place overall, while Spencer sneaked across in 17:44 for a solid second place.

For the women, there has not been a single female with a long winning streak. Both new and familiar faces continue to burst across the finish line first, and this year was no exception. Laurie Parton, 32, of Newton, NJ, running her first Freeze, had to hold off the likes of Michelle Wolyniec, 22, of Plains, to take first place. Parton cruised across the finish line in a great time of 19:39, while Wolyniec was a sparse 10 seconds behind. Female winning streaks belong to Gloria Rawls, from Mountaintop, and Charlene Lyford, from Greene, NY, both with three Freeze crowns to their credit.

First local male finisher was Jeremy Kacuba, 22, of Dallas--formerly a Tunkhannock cross-country runner--who finished 7th overall, and won his age group in 18:41. First local female finisher was Tunkhannock's Sandra Howard, 43, who placed 26th overall, captured first female Masters, and won her age group with a time of 22:11. First male Masters was Michael Hudyncia, 41, of Towanda, with a time of 18:35.

Having suffered through a slim year last year, Race Director Sandra Howard was very pleased to see 81 runners make it to this year's running. Early advertising of the race and connection with several Web sites were a big help in getting the word out. Weather is always a factor, come race day, and this year was no exception, with a stiff northwesterly wind hitting everyone in the face as they negotiated the final stretch back to Roslund Elementary.

Awaiting the runners, as in every edition of the Freeze, were crock pots of hot soup and hot chocolate, a tradition that always makes the Freeze an enjoyable winter race experience.

MALE

Overall

1. Jeff Crahalla 17:30

12 and Under

1. Troy Franko 31:36

13-19

1. Tyler Spencer 17:44
2. Joe Maskalis
3. Jon Douglas

20-24

1. Jeremy Kacuba 18:41

25-29

1. E.J. O'Malley 19:26
2. Chad Butcher
3. Matthew Keiper

30-34

1. Randy White 19:59
2. Todd Weitzmann
3. Bill Lewis

35-39

1. John Kirby 18:51
2. Jim Phelan
3. Doug Toye

40-44

1. Michael Hudyncia 18:35
2. Paul Reinert
3. James Hanlin

45-49

1. Tom Carter 17:53
2. Reginald Thomas
3. Paul Oliver

50-54

1. Ho Titman 19:53
2. Bob Caterson
3. Donald Kitchen

55-59

1. Joe Naughton 23:28
2. John Bendick
3. John Chaffee

60 and Over

1. Rich Hause 23:32
2. Frank Dudley
3. George Mowry

FEMALE

Overall

1. Laurie Parton 19:39

20-24

1. Michelle Wolyniec 19:49
2. Kathlyn Hovan
3. Nicole Boice

25-29

1. Jennifer Stec-Gagliardi 22:17
2. Michelle Mackey
3. Christine Rosenkrans

30-34

1. Gretchen Weitzmann 26:01
2. Bridget Williams

35-39

1. Marsha Pulz 25:16
2. Lauran Hall

40-44

1. Sandra Howard 22:11
2. Gloria Rawls
3. Karla Eisch

45-49

1. Arlene McAuoy 36:00
2. Lisa Gardner

50-54

1. Donna Russell 26:35
2. Sylvia Seibert
3. Ruth Chaffee

55-59

1. Margret Betz 23:45

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