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Nathan Fischer (left) just finished ahead of Matth Dobson (right) in the 2014 Alligator Trot 5K Road Race and Walk Saturday at Lake Jackson. | Precision Image Photography

Dobson takes 2nd at Trot race

Published 12:04am Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Jay, Fla. resident Matt Dobson didn’t mind one bit that Nathan Fischer of Enterprise won the 2014 Alligator Trot 5K Road Race and Walk on Saturday morning.

Dobson, 44, who had won the race seven times in a row, finished the race in second place at 18 minutes, and 55 seconds. Fischer clocked in just 32 seconds faster at 18:23.

“I just think the biggest key is hydrating before it, and I train a lot, too,” Fischer said about beating not only the field, but the heat. “Those are pretty much the two biggest reasons.”

After about a mile, Fischer said he got in a groove and there was no holding back on the asphalt course at Lake Jackson that goes across state lines in Alabama and Florida.

Dobson, who won a track state championship at JHS, and won a conference championship in the 10,000-meter while at Florida State, has been slowly coming back from an achilles tendon pull injury.

“I wasn’t in my best shape,” Dobson said. “It had been aggravating me and I took some time off and I took my eyes off of racing.”

In fact, Dobson participated in his first race since the injury at the Braves Country 5K in Atlanta last weekend, and finished third in his age group. He said he crossed the finished line 40 seconds faster at 19:36. He was 38th out of 1,600 runners.

Fischer, who is a flight school student and originally from Rockford, Ill., said he’s been running on the 10-mile team at Ft. Rucker in Enterprise for a while, and added that he’s gotten used to the heat.

“It’s pretty humid down here,” he said. “That’s the biggest thing is getting used to the heat. You’re not going to get your best times out there, but at the same time, neither is any one else.”

The Alligator Trot has always been a special race for Dobson. He even ran in the race back when it was called the Lake Jackson Run in 1992. In the 1992 race, Dobson finished the race in 15:21, which is still a course record.

Dobson’s son, David, also ran in the race and finished fourth overall at 19:39.

“He (David) asked me how many times I have run in the race,” Matt said. “I looked back and I’ve won the thing 10 times.”

Dobson said the race as a whole, put on by Alligator Trot race director Karen Johnson, was great.

“She does a fantastic job,” he said.

Fischer said it was a great race and that he’s going to recommend it to others.

Another special element for Dobson was that, being he served in the U.S. Army reserves, he also didn’t mind that another serviceman beat him.

“I was glad that if I couldn’t win it, another soldier won it,” Dobson said. “That made me happy.”

Below are the top three finishers in each category and age group:

Male Runners

• Overall Male Runner: Nathan Fischer, 18:23

• Master (40+): Matthew Dobson, 18:55

• Grandmaster (50+): Brian McMahon, 20:28

• Senior Grandmaster (60+): Pat Judd, 24:27

• Great Grandmaster (70+): Winston Howell, 35:36

Age, 0-12

• Tray Boutwell, 32:27

• Clayton Dunn, 35:00

• Ian Pedergraft, 43:43

Age, 13-19

• David Dobson, 19:39

• Hailey Myddelton, 22:32

• Stormi Hein, 29:15

Age, 25-29:

• Davin Hand, 24:06

• Christopher Byrd, 34:30

Age, 30-34:

• Mark Purcell, 23:22

• Kevin Brewer, 25:00

• Cory Bryan, 26:36

Age, 40-44:

• Bob Walker, 19:23

• Robert Hall, 22:31

• Lamar Stokes, 36:12

Age, 45-49

• Tony Spicer, 21:16

• Robert Patron, 22:14

• Scott Young, 25:06

Age, 50-54:

• Randy Hildreth, 22:51

• Jimmy Russell, 23:44

• William Murphy, 25:59

Age, 55-59:

• Greg Bilby, 22:59

• Ken Williams, 25:12

• Joe Jones, 28:11

Age, 60-64:

• Mark Vaughn, 28:41

• Larry Scarberry, 31:16

• Gary Strickland, 31:34

Age, 65-69:

• Robert Lee, 29:56

• Bill Wallis, 34:37

Age, 70+:

• Bob Romano, 47:52

• Leon Agullana, 48:07

 

Female

Runners

Overall Female Runner: Jeani Pendergraft, 25:30

Master (40+): Angila Walker, 25:41

Grandmaster (50+): Kim Young, 30:36

Senior Grandmaster (60+): Jo Sandelin, 38:55

Age, 0-12:

Kendall Pendergraft, 50:46

Age, 13-19:

• Emily Sturkey, 29:30

• Sadie Franklin, 29:37

Age, 20-24:

• Marylynn Gilbert, 28:22

• Sierra Wanner, 28:39

• Susie McDaniel, 34:34

Age, 25-29:

• Melanie Adkison, 48:24

Age, 30-34:

• April Hantzis, 26:36

• Summer Purcell, 30:36

• Joanna Whigham, 33:34

Age, 35-39:

• Tiffany Plunkett, 27:38

• Jenny Smith, 31:11

• Jamie Ortiz, 32:46

Age, 40-44:

• Jennifer Malich, 29:34

• Kelley Fore, 29:55

• Darcey Hall, 32:24

Age, 45-49:

• Holly Wilson, 27:26

• Michele Gerlach, 33:01

• Laurie Gilbert, 34:11

Age, 50-54:

• Sheri Parente, 41:29

• Leida Bilby, 43:10

Age, 55-59:

• Monica Markham, 41:16

• Lynn Touchton, 42:13

• Cheryl Dunn, 44:16

Age, 60-64:

• Joyce White, 48:03

• Melissa McMahon, 59:51

 

Male Walkers

Overall Male Walker: Ken Smalewich, 31:20

Age, 0-12:

• Wheeler Stuart, 1 hour, 3.33 minutes

Age, 40-49:

•  David Bagley, 46:20

Age, 50-59:

• Michael Million, 38:33

• Ed Leven, 46:18

Age, 60-69:

• Rick Simmond, 46:37

• Charles Cummings, 55:27

Age, 70+:

• Ferrell McDougald, 37:28

• Dave DeRuiter, 40:12

 

Female

Walkers

Overall Female Walker: Valerie Hein, 37:27

Age, 50-59:

• Mellody Hughes, 41:29

• Vicki Bullock, 52:40

• Nancy Cummings, 55:27

Age, 70+:

• Kathleen Morris, 42:20

• Melba Crews, 47:51

Complete results from Saturday’s race are on the Alligator Trot’s website at www.alligatortrot.com.

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