SHORE AC ATHLETES PLAY STARRING ROLES AT USA INDOOR NATIONAL MASTERS CHAMPIONSHIPS - 12 TEAMMATES CAPTURE GOLD MEDALS !!!!
NEW YORK - Three days and hundreds of events in every age bracket from 25-29 to infinity.
Yes, the USA Track and Field Masters Indoor National Championships, staged Friday-Saturday-Sunday, March 18-19-20, at The New Balance Armory Track and Field Center, had something for everybody.
And an array of Shore Athletic Club member-athletes took full advantage of the meet coming - well, just about - to their backyard by racking up lots of medals, championship patches and national team points. All while having a great time enjoying the sport they love and competing against friendly rivals assembled from all over the nation, and a pack of international athletes, as well.
Just ask Shore AC teammates "Neni" Lewis, Ana Irrizarry, Sherry Brosnahan, Rick Lapp, Dr. Ivan Black, Michael Kish, John McDonald, George Alexandris, Pat Toland, Barry Blake, Marc Bloom and William (Bill) Forlenza, for starters.
They're all National Masters champions now! And for Neni, Sherry, Rick, Ivan, Michael, Pat and Barry, they are repeat National Masters champions in their assorted categories.
Joining them as National Masters scorers were SAC teammates were Dave Friedman, Ira Wolfe, Tony Plaster, Carl Huff, and Spider Rossiter.
Yes, and even a fellow named Elliott Denman.
Joining in the three-day fray, as well, were John Kuhi, Matt Wallack and Herbie Medina.
All told, they registered 115 points on the men's side (to rank 6th in the nation) and 75 on the women's side (11th in the nation) for a total of 190 points to rank 8th over-all in America. There were 73 scoring men's teams in the meet and 39 in the women's. Friendly rivals from Potomac Valley, SoCal and Greater Philadelphia ranked 1-2-3 on the combined scoring charts. Top six scored in each event (on an 8-6-4-3-2-1 basis.)
(Note: All this scoring may be subject to review.
National Masters Hall of Famer/Shore AC Hall of Famer "Neni" Lewis, now competing in the W60 bracket, again was brilliant, taking home golds in the shot put (9.60 meters), weight throw (16.16) and super weight (10.52.) All this coming off some injuries and health concerns.
Brilliant in her Shore AC debut was Ana Irizarry in the W40 category. Her 9.02 win in the 60 hurdles set an American record and she added a win in the high jump (1.40), 2nds in the shot put (12.60) plus a 3rd in the 60 (8.08) and a fourth in the 200 (26.83) Way to go, Ana !!
After a few years on the inactive/sabbatical list, past National 40K racewalking champion and US Masters record-breaker Sherry Brosnahan made a brilliant return to the Shore AC lineup. Competing in W70, Sherry took gold medals in the 1-mile (11:14.63) and 3000-meter (22:53.96) racewalks, then was 6th in the shot put (4.52.)
Rick Lapp, as ever, was busy all over the Armory. He won the M70 long jump (4.09) and triple jump (8.48), ran 2nd in the 60 hurdles (11.0), 5th in the 400 (1:10.26) and 7th in the 200 (31.86.)
Michael Kish was again brilliant in the M70 sprints, racing to double golds in the 60 (8.41) and 200 (28.07), after a 27.85 prelim,
John MacDonald was crowned as the speediest M85 200 man in the nation, with a decisive 42.08 victory.
Dr. Ivan Black and Dave Friedman were hugely busy, as well. For beginners, they battled it out in the M70 pentathlon, and Ivan won all five individual events for a winning score of 2,521 points, as Dave snared second at 953. Ivan then focused on his individual events and won the M70 high jump at 1.25, was second in the long jump (3.60) and triple jump (8.34) and 4th in the 60 hurdles (13.12.) Dave added a 2nd in the M70 HJ at 1.00.
Finding new energy, Lapp, Black and Friedman joined Spider Rossiter in a pair of relays, placing second in the M70 4x200 (2:25.15) and 4x800 (14:19.07.) Spider clocked a 1:12.08 in the M70 800, too.
Pat Toland, a brilliant football player and an NFL candidate at one point, continued celebrating his weight-event talents, with a win in the M55 shot put (13.94) and 2nds in the weight throw (16.83) and super weight (8.02.)
Famed track and field journalist and coach Marc Bloom marked his new status in the M75 division by winning the 3,000 meters in 14:04.99. Barry Blake won the M65 3000 racewalk (22:16.73) a day after placing 2nd in the 1-mile walk (11:31.74.) Of course, these are relative sprints to him – Barry is a past Masters 50K (31.1.-mile) champion,
The Masters movement now stresses inclusivity and thus action lists full events in the M/W 25-29 and 30-34 brackets. George Alexandris, who'd been the NCAA Division III LJ champion for Montclair State with a 26-plus leap, and now coaches at Fair Lawn HS, continues proving his fitness and thus won the M25 LJ at 6.64 and ran 3rd in the 60 (7.21.)
Yet another Shore AC winner was William (Bill) Forlenza in the M65 shot put at 12.46. But for some unknown reason, he wasn't listed for the club in official scoring results.
Another former Montclair State luminary, Ira Wolfe tossed an 8.41 for 4th in the M75 shot put. Tony Plaster raced 2:52.73 for 5th in the M70 800 and 1:05.50 for 6th in the 400. Carl Huff, once the Rutgers pole vault record-setter and now a top coach and official in the event, soared to 2.60 meters for 5th in the M65 PV.
Matt Wallack sped a 1:02.97 400 for 8th in the M55 400 and a 28.45 for 13th in the 200. Shore AC lifetime trustee John Kuhi – who has been a key member of the “new” SAC since its very beginning, and ran the 800 leg on the club’s first major triumph of “the new era,” in the DMR at the 1966 National Relay Championships, continues staying right wth it, and was 7th in the M75 800 (4:43.84.)
Herb Medina made his Shore AC debut in the M65 60, and placed 12th in 11.23.
Shore AC surely would have scored lots more points and collected more medals if veteran stars Harry Nolan and Panse Geer, both entered but on the injured list, had been able to compete.
Furthermore, our team score would surely have risen if teammate Hugh Sweeny had been able to get his USATF registration status for the club amended on time. Former Princeton star Sweeny, once one of the nation's top marathoners and a high place-winner at New York, Boston, Atlantic City and other major 26.2-milers, ran 2nd in the M75 800 (3:20.13), mile (7:08.40), and 3000(14.57.84) and 4th in the 400 (1:23.53.) But he was listed as unattached.
AND THIS late-breaking bulletin: The silver medal in the M85 shot put went to teammate Elliott Denman. Said Denman, "my toss (4.13 meters) was extremely modest, but I was there, I gave it my best effort, probably reached a lot of decibels, scored some points, and had a lot of fun in the process. To me that's what it's all about."
---- ELLIOTT DENMAN.