SCRANTON –Jake Shoemaker and Nadalie Solomon led a field of about 550 runners, capturing overall male and female honors in the Race for the Cure 5K Run on Saturday at Courthouse Square in downtown Scranton.
Shoemaker, 27, of Philadelphia, broke the tape in 17 minutes, 22 seconds. He outran second-place finisher, Mark Arzie, 16, of Scott Township, by 40 seconds.
"Everyone started fast," said Shoemaker, who ran track and cross country in high school, but not at the college level. "I just tried to keep an even pace. I took control at around mile 1. That's when I pulled in front. After that, I just tried to settle into a good rhythm. I just tried to keep an even pace and save energy for the hill at Cooper's (bar and restaurant)."
The Philadelphian was given a heads up about the hill at Cooper's by his sister-in-law, Jen Kincel, who lives in Olyphant.
"Once I tackled the hill, I never looked back, so I wasn't sure whether anyone was coming up on me or not," Shoemaker said. "But, I was OK and held on for the win."
Solomon, 32, of Mountain Top, won the female division in 20:36. She outraced second-place finisher, Abbie Kearns, 21, of Scranton and a student at the University of Scranton, by 54 seconds.
"It went well," said Solomon. "I broke my arm about five weeks ago and just recently had my cast removed. So my training, of late, has been kind of iffy. But I was OK. It was pretty congested over the first mile. I took control after the first mile – I broke away. After that, I just started picking off guys who were running ahead of me en route to the finish."
John Major, 49, of Scranton, won the First Male Cancer Survivor to Finish the Run award, clocking in at 26:26. And Karen Gannon, 44, of Honesdale, won the First Female Cancer Survivor to Finish the Run award with a 26:35-time.
Jim Boettger, 62, of Duryea received the overall male award in the 5K walk, finishing in 37:05. Marisa Naughton, 45, of Scranton, won top female honors in the walk, clocking in at 39:11. Amanda Jarrow, 25, of Jessup, was the first female cancer survivor to finish, clocking in at 38:56.
This year's race, according to Dolly Woody, executive director of the Susan G. Komen Foundation for Northeastern Pennsylvania, drew around 6,500 (about 550 runners and the rest walkers) participants and raised around $200,000, between sponsors and participants.
"Last year, between the race and other events, we were able to fund around $270,000 for education, screening and treatment grants to non-profit organizations throughout 16 counties in Northeastern Pennsylvania," said Woody. "And it looks like we're going to reach our goal of $275,000 for this year's race."
Woody said, "It's all about the hope – coming together. The energy and spirit of the day is outstanding. This race is the largest 5K cause-related event in northeastern Pennsylvania. And we're close to our goal."
Seventy-five percent of the money from the event stays in northeastern Pennsylvania. The other 25 percent go for breast cancer research.
Scranton Race for the Cure results
Overall Male Winner: Jake Shoemaker, 27, Philadelphia, 17:22
Overall Female Winner: Nadalie Solomon, 32, Mountain Top, 20:36
First Male Cancer Survivor to Finish: John Major, 49, Scranton, 26:26
First Female Cancer Survivor to Finish: Karen Gannon, 47, Honesdale, 26:35
Overall Male Winner: Jim Boettger, 62, Duryea, 37:05
Overall Female Winner: Marisa Naughton, 45, Scranton, 39:11
First Male Cancer Survivor to Finish: None
First Female Cancer Survivor to Finish: Amanda Jarrow, 25, Jessup, 38:56
Field: 550 (run), 5,950 (walk). Starter and timing: Insta Results. Results: Steve Hill. Race director: Michele Tierney. Susan G. Komen Foundation Executive Director for Northeastern Pennsylvania: Dolly Woody.
Sunday, Sept. 16: Scranton Lupus Loop 5K Run/Walk at Nay Aug Park at 11 a.m. Info: 1 (888) 99-LUPUS or Lupus Foundation Pocono/Northeast Branch, 558-2008 or www.lupuspa.org
Saturday, Sept. 22: Wyoming Valley Striders End of Summer 10K Run (final leg of Striders Triple Crown) at Kirby Park at 9 a.m. Info: Vince Wojnar, 474-5363.
Sunday, Oct. 7: Steamtown Marathon, starting at Forest City Regional High School at 8 a.m. and finishing at Courthouse Square, downtown Scranton. Info: 345-3481.
Sunday, Oct. 14: Jewish Community Center of Wyoming Valley's Benjamin August Memorial 3 Mile Run/Walk at the JCC, S. River Street, Wilkes-Barre at 9 a.m. Info: Bill Buzza, 824-4646.