The last pro race of the 2014 season ran Saturday in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, as the USATF Club Cross Country Championships brought many of the best club teams from around the country to compete over hill-and-dale. Portland athletes had a strong showing, as four different runners earned top ten finishes.
Bowerman Track Club came up big on the men's side. Ryan Hill ran away from the field late to take home his first national title as a professional, crossing the line in 29:07.03 for the 10,000m course. Hill beat Hansons-Brooks athlete Jacob Riley by two seconds, using his lethal middle distance speed to pull away. Teammate German Fernandez nearly made it a 1-2 finish for the BTC, finishing third and less than a second off Riley. Olympian and teammate Matt Tegenkamp rounded out the BTC showcase with a ninth place finish in 29:22.81.
On the women's side, Nike Oregon Project's Tara Erdmann had a tremendous race and conclusion to her 2014 season with a runner-up finish. Erdmann held tough over the final mile, finishing in 19:24.06 over the 6,000m distance, ten seconds behind repeat champion Laura Thweatt and nearly ten seconds ahead of Brooks Beasts member Angela Bizzarri, who finished third.
Congratulations to all the Portland pros on a fantastic weekend of racing!