Community notebook: Loken victorious at Girlfriends Half Marathon

Phoenix resident soaks up vibe of Vancouver race

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photoSusan Loken of Phoenix won Sunday’s Girlfriends Half Marathon held in downtown Vancouver. Her time was 1 hour, 22 minutes, 41 seconds.

(/The Columbian)

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Susan Loken came to Vancouver to catch up with friend Amy O'Hara, and to test her fitness.

She walked away with another half marathon victory.

Loken, from Phoenix, Ariz., won the sixth Girlfriends Half Marathon on Sunday with a time of 1 hour, 22 minutes, and 41 seconds.

Loken said she was pleased with her time, and impressed by the vibe and the presentation of the race.

"I came into town thinking it was going to be this small little race," Loken said.

Loken, 49, is an accomplished runner. She has won the U.S. Masters Marathon Championships four times.

This was only the third half-marathon Loken participated in since the Olympic marathon trials in January. That was the third time she ran in the marathon trials, and she did it with a significant hamstring injury that forced her to take five months off from training.

"It was an opportunity for me to see where my fitness was," she said.

Winning by almost four minutes over Nicole Gulick of Portland was satisfying, but Loken said that her lasting memories will be of the support for all 2,600 runners and walkers.

"One of the greatest gifts that running has given me is friends," so she was happy to participate in a race that promotes fitness and friendship.

The top local finisher was Cyndee Hein, 48, of Camas who finished in 1:31:35. In 2008, Hein was co-champion of the second Girlfriends Half Marathon.For a list of top age division and area runners, check out the Community Sports Scoreboard.

New high school hockey league starts play

Vancouver/North won its opening game of the season on Sunday as a new high school hockey league dropped the puck. Winterhawks Varsity Hockey is a new league with four teams in the metro area.Vancouver/North beat South 9-3 behind six goals from Columbia River senior Logan Anderson. Washougal senior Caleb Collins and Union freshman Alex Stoneham each scored a goal, and Skyview senior Jake Morgan had three assists.

Kickboxers highlight local MMA show

Rico Martinez scored a first-round technical knockout to win a kickboxing match that the main event of The MMA Challenge, an amateur fighting event on Oct. 6 at JRT's Boxing and MMA in Vancouver.

In the co-main event kickboxing match, Dylan Blakesley defeated John Heilman by split decision. The hometowns of the participants and the weight classifications of the fighters were not available.

Three fighters from JRT Boxing and MMA took part in the show, with two of them scoring wins. Clemente Bosche beat Sean Johnson one minute into their mixed martial arts match. Leonard Collins beat Adrian Lozanbo by unanimous decision in a kickboxing match.

A complete list of results from the 13 bouts is in the Community Sports Scoreboard.The gym at the Marketplace Shopping Center, 5000 E Fourth Plain, has an amateur boxing show scheduled for Saturday. Doors open at 6 p.m. General admission costs $10. Call Jack Thompson at 360-904-6666 for details.

Golf memorial event is Saturday

Lewis River Golf Course in Woodland is hosting a special tournament on Oct. 20 in memory of Todd Bekins.

The four-person scramble will have a shotgun start at noon. The entry fees are $75 per person or $300 for a foursome. Money raised will be donated to the Bekins family. Fees include use of a golf cart and a post-tournament dinner.

Todd Bekins was a club professional at the course who died Aug. 24 in a car accident.

To sign up or to learn more, call Lewis River Golf Course at 360-225-8254, or visit www.TeeToGreenClub.com.

Lacrosse event draws 160

A group of more than 160 boys and girls took part in a Clark County Lacrosse Extravaganza held on Oct. 7 at Luke Jensen Sports Park in Vancouver.

Designed to introduce school-age kids to the sport, the event included instruction in the fundamentals of the sport by members of the King's Way High School boys lacrosse program.

To learn more about a sport that overt the past decade has seen increased popularity in Clark County and the Northwest, visit www.kingswaylacrosse.org and http://www.swwashingtonlacrosse.org.

COMMUNITY SPORTS NEWS is published each Tuesday. To submit items, call 360-735-4521 or e-mail paul.danzer@columbian.com.