Wolfe, Herbert top 5-mile run

GLADSTONE – Escanaba High School sophomore Joey Wolfe put a solid plan in motion Friday as he won the Firecracker five-mile run in 28 minutes, 25 seconds.

Esky senior Eric Cousineau, who led by 15 yards at the midway point, settled for runner-up honors (29:56), with Mitch DeLong of Calumet third (30:08).

“I felt pretty strong,” said Wolfe. “I just tried to pace off Eric until the last mile, then I made my move. I tend to do better with the longer distances and was really looking forward to this race. The weather conditions weren’t too bad. It was a little hot on the boardwalk, otherwise it was perfect.”

Wolfe’s strategy was similar to that of women’s champion Becky Herbert of Tinley Park, Ill., who was clocked in a personal-best 30:11.

“I definitely wanted to be patient, then I pushed as much as I could in the last mile,” said Herbert, whose previous PR was 30:30. “When I looked at my three-mile time (17:40), I knew I was implementing what I was trying to do. The weather today was perfect. This is so much better running here than in Chicago. It was so crisp and cool, which is perfect for a runner.”

Former Escanaba resident Krista O’Dell placed second (33:38), with Gladstone sophomore Leigha Woelffer third (34:06).

The race, sponsored by the Gladstone Kiwanis, drew 215 runners and was held under sunny conditions with temperatures in the low 60s.