Paul Smith's College Striders in final tuneup before US Nationals in Wisconsin

Paul Smith's College Striders in final tuneup before US Nationals in Wisconsin

2015 Highland Forest 5K & 10K Snowshoe Races

Final Tune-up before US Nationals in Wisconsin

Fabius, NY ~ February 22, 2015


Fourteen members of the Paul Smith’s College Striders took part in the Highland Forest Snowshoe Races in the final tune-up before heading to Eau Claire, Wisconsin for US Nationals.

5 Kilometers:  Freshman Cody Sears placed second in the Junior (age 15 – 19) 5K with a time of 34:51, while fellow freshman Tyler Dezago placed third in 37:16 over one of the toughest courses of the season.  The majority of this course was varying terrain with unpacked fresh, deep powder over the 5K loop.  Ezra Hulbert (Mexico, NY) won the division with a time of 34:43.  Ezra has been snowshoe racing for the past five seasons, and has considerable experience training in deep powder.  This trio will be representing the best of New York State snowshoe runners when they compete at US Nationals next Saturday in Eau Claire, Wisconsin where it appears like they might have 3” of snow currently.

Nicole Landry took part in the 5K and placed second for the 20 – 99 age category with a time of 46:02.  Although Nicole qualified for US nationals about a month ago at the Empire State Snowshoe Racing Association (ESSRA) Championships, she has decided to stay behind and focus on her academic obligations.

10 Kilometers (6.2 miles):  Chloe Mattilio (Sophomore) won the women’s event with a time of 1:10:42 and placed fifth overall.  Joe St. Cyr (Freshman) won the 20 – 24 age category while finishing second overall with a time of 59:39.  Rob Calamia (Junior) placed fourth overall in 1:08:11 and second in the 20 – 24 category.  Lauren Brieant (Sophomore) continued her excellent season with a fourth place overall for the women and second to Chloe in the 20 – 24 age category with a finish time of 1:23:36.  Lauren finished 17th overall.

Llew Palmer (Senior) finished third (age 20 – 24) in 1:19:27 and 12th overall, while Cody Dennis (Freshman) finished fourth (age 20 – 24) in 1:25:54 and 18th overall.

Natalie Palko (Junior) placed third in the women’s 20 – 24 age class with a time of 1:37:07, followed by Lea Anthony (Senior) in 1:45:10.  Lea was experiencing trouble with her snowshoe bindings throughout the race.  Bianca Fournier (Junior) finished in 1:55:51, followed by Sarah Butler (Sophomore) in 1:55:52, and then Amanda Preston (Freshman) in 1:55:53.

The complete 5K results can be found at:

The complete 10K results can be found at:

At US Nationals, Joe St. Cyr, Chloe Mattilio and Jack Mulvihill will all be competing in the 13.1 mile half marathon distance on snowshoes in Eau Claire, Wisconsin next Sunday.  This will be the first time this distance has been competed at the national level, and this trio has been ramping up their endurance training in preparation. 

Tyler Dezago and Cody Sears will be the two representatives of the college competing in the 5K Junior Nationals, which this year will be held in honor of Paul Smith’s College student Nic Pendl who competed for Paul Smith’s College in 2014.  Nic died tragically this past August just prior to the beginning of the fall semester. 

The following Paul Smith’s College men are scheduled to compete in the 10K at nationals:

Cody Dennis, Chris Peterson, Dave Kucia, Jake Polfleit, and Matt Williams, while Lea Anthony, Lauren Brieant, Ashley Evans, and Jen Maguder are all competing for the women at this distance. 

The top three finishers in the junior 5K (age 19 and under) are recognized as members of the US national team, while a top five finish in the 10K and the half marathon will all be recognized as members of the US national team. 

Our runners who are not competing in the half marathon on Sunday are likely to be competing in the US nationals 4 X 2.5 K relay event.  The runners from Paul Smith’s College have worked especially hard during this condensed season, and over the past three seasons we’ve had at least one relay national championship team, and sometimes two.  Our men’s team won in 2012 in Colorado, while both the men’s and women’s teams won in 2013 in Oregon.  Last season, our women’s team won again, as well as our co-ed team.  There might well be faster runners at the national level, but our team competes as a variety of distances, and frequently several races per day or back to back long distance races on a weekend in preparation for nationals.  Several of our snowshoe runners are also on the Nordic ski team, so these athletes are training and competing over a dozen hours per week, with some racing over 30 miles (50 Kilometers).  They will be as prepared as they can be to represent the North Country and Paul Smith’s College at US nationals next weekend.