2023 Collegiate Snowshoe National Championships
A Success in Idaho
Paul Smith’s College (NY) Dominates the Collegiate Championships
McCall, Idaho (Feb. 4)- What a day of snowshoe running in Idaho. Temperatures in the low 20’s and 5,300 feet of elevation greeted athletes from across the U.S. for the 2023 edition of the U.S. and Collegiate National Snowshoe Racing Championships held at Jug Mountain Ranch in McCall, Idaho.
The Paul Smith's College (NY) Snowshoe Team had a very successful individual and team performance dominating the Collegiate Snowshoe National Championships. The team returned to the North Country with three individual Collegiate National Champions and a total of 12 Collegiate Snowshoe All Americans.
PSC’s Wesley Burkitt, Ellen Haas, and Noah Kuc won the individual Collegiate National Snowshoe Racing Titles in their respective divisions. Burkitt (Bath, PA) won the Women's 5K (U-20) in 27:40 followed by fellow teammate Reese Covington (Bozeman, MT) in 30:29.
Burkit and Covington were the top two collegiate athletes to finish the 5K and earn positions on the US Junior National Team. Burkit's first place finish was only the third time Paul Smith's College has had a student win an event at US Snowshoe Nationals, with the most recent being Matt Leichty's win the Junior Men's 5K in Ogden, UT in 2016 and Chloe Matillio's women's win in the Marathon also in 2016.
Colorado College School of Mines standout Grayson Lee claimed the gold medal in the U20 College Men’s 5K.
This day belongs to Paul Smith’s College, as their very own Ellen Haas (Red Creek, NY) won the Women's 10K Collegiate National Championship in 1:06:15, while teammate Noah Kuc (Sterling, NY) won the Men's 10K Collegiate National Championship in 54:13.
The PSC Men's and Women's top five finishers in the 10K all earned All American honors from the Collegiate Running Association. Madison Reardon (Saranac Lake, NY) placed second collegiately in 1:06:50, followed by Samantha Severing (Livingston Manor, NY) in 1:11:52; Ellie Judice (Biddeford, ME) in 1:25:11 and Haven Bradt (Berea, OH) in 1:28:21. For the men, Zack Sprott – Scribner (Watertown, NY) finished the 10K in 54:19, followed by Sam Finger (Canandaigua, NY) in 54:40, and Alex Cameron (Westport, MA) in 57:16 and Logan Krahn (Salem, NH) in 57:52. Both Sprott-Scribner and Finger earned Collegiate Running Association All American honors in 2020 when they competed in Leadville, CO.
Coach Jim Tucker has been leading the Paul Smith’s College program since 1987, and this team performance was the most impressive by far of any team he has coached. The Jug Mountain 10K course included over 850 feet of ascent, with a base elevation of 5,300 feet. The students were obligated to train over their extended break from the college on their own, and many of them were far removed from snowshoe running conditions due to where they reside. They had plenty of alternative training regimes provided to them, and one can see the fruits of their efforts. Many of these same students have never been at altitude, where the challenges of reduced oxygen can present challenges to athletes, but this crew overcame these challenges with flying colors.
The U.S. National Champions in the open division, Joseph Gray (Colorado Springs) and Jackie Hering are no strangers to the podium. Gray was the 2017 World champion in Saranac Lake and the following year in Spain. Gray has won the national title in 2018, 2020 and now in 2023. Gray's time of 40:59 was just over 30 seconds over Eric Hartmark (Duluth, MN) in 41:31. Hartmark won the title in 2022. Erik Barkhaus of Seattle, WA placed third in 42:43.
Hering (Cottage Grove, WI) won the 2022 National title in Cable, WI and has been on the podium many times. Hering won in 47:33, while Amber Tookey (Boise, ID) placed second in 48:30, and Samantha Roecker of Charleton, NY placed third in 49:22.
Complete race results can be found at: