WCAP runners lead All-Army to silver in Armed Forces Cross Country
February 15, 2011
SAN DIEGO, Feb. 15, 2011 -- U.S. Army World Class Athlete Program runner Spc. Robert Cheseret won the men's 12K and Maj. Emily Potter finished second in the women's 8K at the 2011 Armed Forces Cross Country Championships Feb. 5, in San Diego.
Both the men's and women's All-Army teams finished runner-up to All-Air Force squads in the Armed Forces Championships, which were run in conjunction with the USA National Cross Country Championships at Mission Bay Park.
Cheseret, 27, the reigning U.S. National champion for 5K on the roads (14:00) and the first U.S. Army finisher in the 2010 Army Ten-Miler (48:20), won the Armed Forces men's 8-kilometer cross-country race in 36 minutes, 37 seconds.
"I ran as hard as I could," said Cheseret, who finished 11th overall against the national field. "I was hoping to do a little bit better, but I wasn't able to run any faster that day. I was hoping to be with the top guys, like top five, but I still ran a good time.
"It feels great to win the Armed Forces championship," said Chesert, a native of Kenya who won NCAA championships at both 5,000 and 10,000 meters on the track while attending the University of Arizona. "I'm really happy and excited about it."
Cheseret will compete Feb. 19, for Team USA at the North American, Central American and Caribbean Athletic Association, or NACAC Cross Country Championships in Port of Spain, Trinidad.
Air Force 2nd Lt. Sean Houseworth of Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., finished second in the Armed Forces men's chase in 37:38, followed by Navy Lt. William Christian of the U.S. Naval Academy in 38:01.
WCAP 1st Lt. John Mickowski, a 1,500-meter specialist on the track, finished fifth in 38:18. Lt. Col. Keith Matiskella of Grafenwoehr, Germany, was ninth in 39:30. WCAP marathoner 1st Lt. Kenneth Foster finished 12th in 39:58. Former WCAP runner Capt. Phillip Sakala of Fort Sill, Okla., was 19th in 44:06.
The All-Air Force men prevailed with 43 points, followed by All-Army (46), All-Navy (49) and All-Marine Corps (NTS). The All-Army team ran without WCAP and Olympic marathoner Maj. Dan Browne, who missed the race because of injury.
Air Force 1st Lt. Caroline White won the women's 8-kilometer Armed Forces race in 29 minutes, 32 seconds. Potter, who is training for the U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials, finished second in 30:10, followed by Navy Lt. Gina Slaby of Tucson, Ariz., in 30:12.
"I started out running conservatively strong and tried to pick it up every lap," said Potter, who trailed Slaby before outkicking her to the finish. "On the fourth lap, I really had to work, but I reeled her in and then passed her on the final curve.
"Unfortunately, our team still lost to Air Force by one point."
The All-Air Force women prevailed with 21 points, followed by All-Army (22), All-Marine Corps (45) and All-Navy (52).
Army WCAP modern pentathlete Capt. Mickey Kelly, a bronze medalist in the five-sport event at the 2007 Pan American Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, finished fourth in 30:20.
Capt. Ashley Urick of Fort Lewis, Wash., was sixth with a time of 31:04, followed by 2nd Lt. Patricia Smith of Fort Sill, Okla., in 10th place at 32:03, to complete the All-Army women's scoring.