Copeland races to overall Homecomer 5K title

Wednesday, August 21, 2002

JACKSON, Mo. -- Danny Copeland's collegiate running career may be over now that his eligibility has run out, but that hasn't slowed him down.

Copeland won overall in the fifth annual Jackson Homecomer 5K race Tuesday night. Copeland finished in a time of 18 minutes, 24 seconds, more than 40 seconds in front of second place.

"It was a fun race," Copeland said. "I was just cruising."

The 5K helps kick off the annual Homecomer celebration. It had about 80 runners.

"This event attracts all of the strong local runners," said Shane Anderson, Parks and Recreation director. "It's more of a fun run just designed for the community."

Copeland, who led the race from start to finish, was joined on the winners' list by Cindy Sprigg. Sprigg took the top female spot with a time of 21 minutes, 11 seconds.

This was the third year that the Homecomers race has used the route starting and ending at the American Legion field.

Copeland said he liked the layout of the course, especially since it reminded him of the training routes he ran throughout Cape Girardeau the past five years.

A chance to keep going

For Copeland, races like the Homecomer are another chance to keep running.

"I just love the competition, that's the main thing," Copeland said. "I miss it."

Although he finished only 25 seconds off the course record, Copeland said he wasn't really concerned with his time.

"It's just another run basically, a good workout," he said.

The Homecomer race is just the start for Copeland. After he receives his master's degree from Southeast Missouri State University in December, he plans to compete in the Memphis Marathon, a sort of homecoming for the Germantown, Tenn., native.

Copeland, who ran the 5K, 10K and cross country for the Indians, said he has a long way to go before he reaches his goal of competing in a marathon.

"That's all I have left to accomplish," he said.

jjoffray@semissourian.com

(573) 335-6611, extension 171

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