News From Terre Haute, Indiana

October 24, 2008

Footnotes: In first marathon, former Sycamore comes out a winner

Indiana State graduate Dani Prince made her debut in the event with a victory in the Columbus Marathon on Sunday.

Prince’s goal was a time under 2 hours and 50 minutes, and she ran a 2:48.56.

Prince, who trains in Bloomington with the same Brooks Team Indiana Elite group that former Sycamores’ NCAA cross country qualifier Jordan Fife trains with, said she played it safe early in the race.

Her first mile was a 6:40 pace before later running some 6-minute flat miles later in the race. She averaged a 6:27.

“Being my first one, I wanted to go out pretty conservatively,” said Prince, who is also coaching the 11th-ranked Bloomington South girls cross country team in semistate action this weekend.

The thrill of winning her first ever marathon was unforgettable.

“It was awesome. I thought I could get top 3. I didn’t go into it thinking I want to win this,” Prince said. “When I took the lead with a mile or two to go, I couldn’t stop smiling. It was like ‘holy crap, I’m going to win my first marathon.’”

Because it’s early in her career, Prince said her next marathon could be quite a while down the road.

“I’ll do some indoor races this winter and may try steeplechase in the outdoor track season. If that doesn’t work out, I’ll just go back to doing 5K and 10K.”


• State-champion Otters — In case you missed the results earlier this month, the Otter Creek girls cross country team celebrated a state championship Oct. 4 at Carmel in the Large School 3K race.

North girls cross country coach Mike Dason is surely thankful to Otter Creek coach Brent Mier’s efforts as he’ll reap the benefits in coming seasons.

Seventh-grader Jessi Conley led the way with a 5th-place finish in a time of 11:17.9, besting 8th-grader Chanli Mundy’s time of 11:27.4. Mundy, formerly the school-record holder until Conley came along, was ninth.

“Chanli Mundy has been the undisputed leader of this team both physically and emotionally from the day she walked in the door in 6th grade,” Mier said. “Jessi Conley is probably the most physically gifted runner I’ve ever had hte opportunity to coach. She has a perfect natural stride and has coupled that with a consistent work ethic that has placed her up in that elite level for the state.”

Eighth-grader Syndney Dickerson, a converted sprinter with a strong kick, was 15th. Kelsey Corr was 48th, and Brenna Bell 54th to round out the Otters’ top five.

• THPD Hot Pursuit 5K — On Oct. 11, 27-year-old Zach Whitkanack took home first place overall with a 5-kilometer time of 16:55 to win the Terre Haute Police Department 5K. Pamela Gresham was the women’s overall winner with her time of 21:29.

Other age-group winners were: Brock Singleton (18:55), David Minor (19:04), Darrell Bayless (19:17), Aaron Gadberry (19:25), John Johnson (19:46), Jacob Decker (20:09), David Wence (20:16), Daniel Coons (20:23), Brian Barger (20:31), V.J. Sakbun (20:45), Baylie Schofstall (22:00), Marlon Query (22:14), Janice Van Vactor (24:04), Allison Finzel (24:20), Erin West (24:46), Myra Bosworth (25:52), Marisha Gibbons (26:22), Stephanie Dyer (28:05), Mimi Swayze (29:08),

Proceeds of the event went to Indiana C.O.P.S. (Concerns of Police Survivors), an organization that benefits the families of officers who died in the line of duty.

• ISU alumni to speak — For the second year in a row, Indiana State track and field alumni will gather as part of the homecoming festivities to talk about the program today at Clabber Girl.

The panel discussion will begin at 4 p.m. and will last to 6 p.m. in the Clabber Girl Conference room. Former track and field greats along with current student-athletes and staff will all come together to reminisce about their time as Sycamores.

Former coach Bill Malloy and former Sycamore greats Bryan Leturgez, Amy Tush (Cohee), Mike Hanna and Christy Sherman (Barrett) will take place in the panel discussion.

Malloy was track and cross country coach from 1967-79 and competed for the Sycamores from 1946-49, competing on one of the best mile relay teams in school history.

Leturgez tied the school record in high jump at 7-feet and broke the school record in the 400-meter hurdles. He went on to compete for three U.S. Olympic bobsled teams.

Tush was the Missouri Valley Conference cross country individual champion in 1993 and captured the conference title in the 5,000 at the outdoor championships in 1994.

Hanna was ISU’s first national champion; he won the college division pole vault title in 1967.

Sherman was a three-time NCAA runner-up in shotput, and her school records in the event still stand.

n Hoosier Fall Classic is Nov. 8 — The 10-kilometer race is at Hawthorn Park at 9 a.m. Download an application to pre-register at

Have an upcoming race? Run an outstanding road race recently? E-mail me at or call (812) 231-4357.