Seven months ago, they walked down the aisle together and became husband and wife, sharing a special, personal moment.
On Sunday, they each ran to victory in two separate local 5K races, sharing a special, competitive moment.
Early Sunday morning, Marina Martino topped all runners — male and female — capturing overall honors in the third annual Navient Ladders & Laces 5K Run in Hanover Township.
Later in the morning, her husband John Martino ran to victory in the 7th annual Max Fine Memorial 5K Run in Wilkes-Barre.
Navient Ladders & Laces 5K
HANOVER TWP. — Marina Martino, 27, who has dominated area running over the past five years (under her maiden name, Orrson), won the Navient race in wire-to-wire fashion in 17 minutes and 38 seconds. Al Trybulski, 43, of Wilkes-Barre Township, finished second, 1:11 seconds behind Marina, winning top male honors.
Olivia Lanza, 23, of Pittston finished third in 20:02. Masin Seriani, 14, of Hanover Twp. finished fourth in 20:29. Stephen Walski, 36, of West Wyoming, who won the first two Navient races, finished fifth in 20:48. And Jill Matthews, 38, of Ashley, who won the inaugural race two years ago, finished sixth in 21:03.
“I ran the first mile in 5:24,” Marina said. “I tried staying at that pace, but the hills on this course are tough, so I slowed up a bit and finished running at a 5:40 pace.”
Then she added with a smile, “I think they should flatten those hills out before next year’s race.”
Trybulski was running just his fourth race ever, including a second-place finish at Navient last year. He’s now scored three second-place finishes in his four races.
“I always finish second,” Trybulski joked.
But in his defense, he’s only been running a few years.
“They talked me into running this race the first year,” he said. “And I hadn’t run before that. And I started enjoying running outdoors. So I continued to run. I’m improving.”
And — as many area runners know — it’s never a disgrace losing to Marina.
Marina, who is an assistant running coach at Lake-Lehman High School, ran a 9-mile training run just before stepping up to the starting line at the Navient race. She’s training for Sunday’s inaugural Jim Thorpe Half Marathon.
The Wyoming Valley Striders’ Ladies Striders “Couch to 5K” — a group dedicated to getting people fit — ran in the Navient race.
The Navient race raises funds for the Hanover Township Fire Department.
Max Fine Memorial 5K
WILKES-BARRE — John Martino, 33, followed his wife’s earlier victory with one of his own by taking first at the Max Fine Memorial 5K Run in 17:30.
Jon Renfer, a 14-year-old from Pittston Township who runs cross country and track for Wyoming Area Catholic, finished second in 19:37. John Zawadski, 46, of Luzerne, finished third in 20:38.
Unlike his wife, John Martino didn’t lead from start to finish.
“A couple of young runners went out fast right from the start, so I moved in front at about halfway into the race,” Martino said. “Then I got into a nice pace and into a good form. And I stayed with that the rest of the way.”
Brenda Brawley, 37, of Shavertown, won top female honors, finishing in 22:35. Amy Feldman, 36, also from Shavertown, finished second in 24:23. Kim Sweeney, 37, of Nanticoke, finished third in 25:31.
“I took it easy because it was a lighter field,” Brawley said. “I got into a nice pace and just stayed with it. But the course is nice and flat. And the weather was perfect.”
The Max Fine races raises funds for muscular dystrophy. Max Fine died from the disease in 2011 at age 61.
Navient Ladders & Laces 5K Run results
Top 3 women
Marina Martino, 27, Dallas, 17:38
Olivia Lanza, 23, Pittston, 20:02
Jill Matthews, 38, Ashley, 21:03
Age group winners: 14 & under: Alicia Orzechowski, Wilkes-Barre, 22:42. 15-19: None. 20-24: Kristan Lombardo, Pittston, 21:49. 25-29: Jaclyn Rawlings, Forty Fort, 30-34: Sam Major, Hunlock Creek, 25:44. 35-39: Karen Moskel, Kingston, 22:51.40-44: Kerry Zawadski, Luzerne, 23:30. 45-49: Marilyn Bezek, Kingston, 31:44. 50-54: Cindy Boyle, Alden, 31:10. 55-59: Sue Greenfield, Wilkes-Barre, 34:39. 60-64: Wanda Grohowski, Wilkes-Barre, 37:39.
Top 3 men
Al Ttybulski, 43, Wilkes-Barre Twp., 18:49
Masin Seriani, 14, Hanover Twp., 20:29
Stephen Walski, 36, W. Wyoming, 20:48
Age group winners: 14 & under: Chase Whitman, Sugar Notch, 15-19: Frank Yuscavage, Hanover Twp., 21:36. 20-24: Jamie Jayne, Wilkes-Barre, 36:57. 25-29: Steph Potter, Mocanaqua, 21:52. 30-34: Brian Stubbs, Pittston, 21:21. 35-39: Ken Lasoski, Hanover Twp., 25:05. 40-44: Jose Luistiateipa, Wilkes-Barre, 23:28. 45-49: Ed Steber, Shickshinny, 25:45. 50-54: Anthony Carlo, Plymouth, 28:08. 55-59: Herb Kline, Bloomsburg, 21:16. 60-64: David Giuliarelli, Ashley, 29:24. 65-69: Rick Hueholt, Berwick, 26:12.
Pace vehicle: Joe Temarantz, Hanover Twp. Fire Chief. Starter: Patti Potomis. Race directors: Potomis, Lisa Stashik, Heather Anderson, Lauren Pollman, Karen Makowski and Dave Riley. Timing and results: kirbyracetiming.com
Max Fine Memorial 5K Run results
Top 3 men
John Martino, 33, Dallas, 17:30
Jon Renfer, 14, Pittston Twp., 19:37
John Zawadski, 46, Luzerne, 20:38
Age group winners: 14 & under: T.J. Bernhardt, 21:03. 30-34: Jason Heppding, 36:33. 35-39: David Smith, 26:37. 40-49: Pat Kulduft, 20:40. 50-59: George Dunbar, 20:46. 60-69: Dave Jiunta, 23:04. 70 & over: Al Pierce, 29:07.
Top 3 women
Brenda Brawley, 37, Shavertown, 22:35
Amy Feldman, 36, Shavertown, 24:23
Kim Sweeney, 37, Nanticoke, 25:31
Age group winners: 14 & under: Gia Dupre, 33:06. 15-19: Neha Metgud, 25:47. 25-29: Jen Calaide, 31:33. 30-34: Katie Lykon, 26:33. 35-39: Erin Kulduft, 28:24. 40-49: Nancy Pepe, 33:43. 50-59: Faina Libman, 31:13. 60-69: Bev Tomasak, 25:59.
Starter: Mike Fine. Timing and results: secondwindtiming.com Race director: Mike Fine.
Sunday: Benjamin August Memorial 3 Mile Run/Walk at the Jewish Community Center, S. River St., Wilkes-Barre at 10:30 a.m. Info: Rick Evans, 570-824-4646
Sunday, May 6: Wyoming Valley Striders 44th annual Cherry Blossom 5 Mile Run and 15th annual “Tim Thomas Memorial” 1 Mile Walk at Kirby Park at 10 a.m. Info: Traci Strungis, 570-470-3612.
Sunday, May 20: Wyoming Valley Striders 27th annual (5.3 mile) Spring Trail Run “Jen Stec Memorial” at Frances Slocum State Park at noon. Info: Don Grose, 570-239-5792 or Linda Wojnar, 570-262-0603.