The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Sports

October 21, 2013

First Mankato half is success for Erichsen

Mankato native Gruenhagen takes second

MANKATO — In the race between the familiar and unfamiliar, the out-of-towner had the edge.

During Sunday’s Mankato Marathon Half, Chris Erichsen of Minneapolis took the title, finishing in 1:09: 53

Mankato native and West High School graduate Chris Gruenhagen took second in 1:12:34

Erichsen, 27, a Spring Valley native, is a former St. John’s University track and cross-country runner who is now getting into competitive racing at longer distances. He said he’s run about six full marathons in his young career. He decided to run the Mankato half after friends from here recommended the event.

“I haven’t spent a ton of time in Mankato,” he said. “It was nice to see the rural areas and the park areas as you come into the city. You see a little of everything.”

Out in those wide-open rural areas, runners battled a south headwind at the start of the race. Erichsen said he missed a personal record by about 5 ½ mintues, but overall, he was happy with the race.

“It was tough,” he said. “It was windy out there and cold. It was tough to get warmed up. Overall, though, it was pretty good.”

For Gruenhagen, he knew what he was getting into. A former West cross-country runner, he was more than familiar with the course.

“I’ve run that (Highway 90) bypass loop a million times,” he said.

He was able to shed a layer of warm clothes and toss them to family, who watched not far from their home. He got a boost of encouragement around the 9 1/2-mile mark when he ran by the Mankato West water stop, which was manned by current Scarelts runners.

Gruenhagen, 30, now lives in Brookings, S.D., where he coaches high school cross country. A year ago, he took third place in the half-marathon with a time of 1:11:01, but it was a “more painful” run, he said.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Sports
Outdoors

Latest auto racing news
Featured Ads
Live Moondogs coverage
Shane Frederick's Twitter updates
Chad Courrier's Sports Report
Latest NCAA basketball news
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
NDN Video
Dombrowski on bringing David Price to Detroit How the MLB Trade Deadline Will Affect the Postseason Steelers feeling a sense of urgency in camp Reaction to Ray Rice's comments Marshawn Lynch Ends Holdout - @TheBuzzeronFOX 5 things I think I think about the Atlanta Falcons Paul Breitner: We're sure Julian Green will be a great player for Bayern Recapping a Blockbuster MLB Trade Deadline Morosi: Tigers pick up Price from Rays Rice intends to become advocate of domestic violence with wife Janay when time is right Ray Rice issues apology for his part in a domestic violence incident A's Acquire Lester, Gomes For Cespedes Price on dealing with trade rumors Arian Foster Answers Questions With Same Boring Answer - @TheBuzzeronFox Pitch Invading Morons Cause Chaos - @TheBuzzeronFOX Cardinals make Peterson highest paid CB Tiger Woods: 1 on 1 Stephen A. Smith -- I Accept ESPN Suspension ... 'It Was My Mistake' Oakland Raiders To Become San Antonio Raiders? - @TheBuzzeronFox Byron Scott: 'This is still a Lakers town'