Running for a good cause at Old Colony

Jan 30, 2023

ROCHESTER — The morning of Saturday, Jan. 28 was cool and sunny — the perfect day for a run, said participants in Old Colony Regional Vocational Technical High School’s Frosty Runner Road Race.

At 10 a.m. sharp, 273 runners, the most in the race’s nine-year history, took off from the starting line. They raced in two divisions, one group ran 10.5 miles, the other group ran 5 kilometers, or 3.1 miles.

Some racers, like New Bedford residents Kyleigh Barao and Jordan Boulay, were training for longer marathons. Others like Carver resident Amber Flockton raced in support of Old Colony’s Cross Country team. Barao, Boulay and Flockton placed first, fourth and second in their respective divisions.

While some racers tried to beat personal records, others were happy to get out and enjoy the winter air.

Bud Morton, 73, took his time running the 5k race. A former sports photographer for the Middleboro Gazette, Morton’s “bum knee” kept him from setting any records but he finished the race strong nonetheless.

Racers ran on town streets surrounding Old Colony. Water stations were set up at intervals along the track and Rochester police officers kept the roads clear of cars.

Around 50 Old Colony students and teachers volunteered to paint directions on roads, man water stations and help keep the event running smoothly, said Maria Szymanski, who volunteered to register last-minute racers.

“We’re like a well oiled machine,” she said. “We know what we’re supposed to do.”

Student volunteers were handing out water at the finish line when New Bedford resident Corey Hebert rounded a bend and completed the 5 kilometer race in a little over 17 minutes.

“It feels good, I’m coming off of indoor track season so this is my first 5k of the year,” said Hebert, who also finished first in the last Frosty Runner Road Race in 2020. “I had to defend the title,” he joked.

He was followed by Rochester resident Mike Griffin who finished the five kilometer race less than one minute later with a time of just over 18 minutes.

At around the one hour mark, the first 10.5 mile runners made their way to the finish line.

While most of the runners were from outside the Tri-Town, a number of local racers placed with fast times for their divisions.

Allison Medeiros, 41, of Mattapoisett finished first in her division with a time of 1:13:29. Philip Cordeiro, 49, of Rochester finished first in his division with a time of 1:23:54. Brady Maguire, 15, of Mattapoisett, finished first in his division with a time of 1:29:57.

The overall winners of the Frosty Runner Road Race are as follows.

In the 10.1 mile category was East Greenwich resident Ross MacAndrew with a time of 54:41 and Sturbridge resident Linda Spooner with a time of 1:10:07. In the 5 kilometer category was Hebert with a time of 17:47 and Connecticut resident Ashley O'Connell with a time of 19:30.

But the Old Colony Cross Country team still came out on top — the race raised approximately $8,000 that will be put toward scholarships for graduating cross-country seniors and to purchase needed equipment throughout the season.