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HELENA -- This week Sidelines revisits a long distance trail run, locals in the Veterans softball tournament, and three former prep athletes serving in the military,

Fitzgerald wins Elkhorn 53-mile run

Helena's John Fitzgerald and Christi Richards of Missoula garnered the annual HURL Elkhorn Endurance Runs 53-mile race titles recently. Fitzgerald, 32, clocked a time of 9 hours, 36 minutes, 51 seconds for his victory, while Richards, 31, was timed in 11:16:27.

Both times were new course records.

Jonmark Smith (Selah) and Anne Rich (Bozeman) were the Masters winners.

The rugged course consists of 13,000-feet of elevation gain in the Elkhorn Mountain trails south of Helena.

The 52K races were captured by Justin Klebe (Laurel) in 6:43:09, and Karen Vandenborre (Calgary) in 7:06:43. The top local-area finisher was Christopher Stump, who came in sixth in the men's run.

In the 15-mile, Andrew Leichtmann (Hot Springs) won the men's race, while the women's event was captured by Ellen Lauchnor (Bozeman). Beth Shumate of Clancy was the highest local area placer, taking fourth in the women's division.

Local softballers in Veterans tourney

Six local softball players -- five from Capital High and one from Helena High -- took part in the sixth annual Veterans Memorial Softball Classic in Belgrade recently.

The Coast Guard Team, with Capital's Lauren Archie and Ally McMillan on the roster, placed third. The Air Force Team placed fourth. Among their players were Vanessa Walsh of Helena and Capital High's Nicole Ames, Jenna Priddy and Sarah Bury.

Shropshire at Triathlon Age Group Nationals

Helena's Robin Shropshire placed 55th in her division at the USA Triathlon Age Group National Championships in Cleveland this weekend.

Competing in the 50-54 division, Shropshire posted a time of 2:33:03.

"I spoke with a lot of seasoned athletes after who said it was one of the tougher swims they had ever done," she wrote on her Facebook page. "Felt great on the run and ran an 8:10 pace so really happy about that."

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