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Krum coach runs PR to beat Flower Mound coach

tara upshawTwo track and cross country coaches tested each other at the Colleyville Lions Club xSIGHTment 5K on an overcast, humid Saturday (June 7) morning in Colleyville, and Keith Pierce won the battle after passing Andrew Cook about a 1 1/4 into the 3.1-mile race. Pierce, the Krum coach and winner of the past two Cowtown Marathons, raced to a personal-best 14:57.7 to not only beat Cook but also pocket the first-prize money of $100.

Pierce, who married on March 15 and took about a month off from running, said the money will help pay for the hotel he and his wife, Stephanie, stayed in Friday night near the race site.

In the women's division, Tara Upshaw, who'll be a senior at Southlake Carroll next school year, trailed Aly Nielson, a 15-year-old from Grapevine, until about 800 meters to the finish. Then she surged and Nielson couldn't hang with her as Upshaw (pictured receiving her trophy from race director Pete Challinor) won in 18:46.3. Nielson finished in 19:08.6. Yolanda Hopping, 4?, was third, but rather take the $25 for the bronze finish, she opted for the masters title and $50. It knocked Fiona Green to second masters and she won $25.

Cook, a previous winner at the xSIGHTment 5K and who won the Dallas Challenge at the Borden Uptown Run & Trolley Walk in March, finished in 15:27.5 to earn $50, and Joe Beisner, 35, came in third at 16:12.7 to take the third-place money of $25.

Pierce said he was somewhat surprised by his time, because he has been concentrating mainly on mileage since he resumed training in April. However, at a recent all-comers track meet in Denton, he ran a 3:58 mile, and ``I knew the speed was there.''

Yet, Pierce was wary after he followed Cook to the first mile, where they were at about 4:34. ``That's a little fast for me,'' he said. He still was able to pass Cook in another quarter of a mile, and breezed to victory, though he never felt safe. ``When I saw Andrew there, I knew it was going to be a tough race,'' Pierce said. ``I was looking over my shoulder at the end. I know you're not supposed to do that, but....''

Participants were treated to a pancake and sausage breakfast, and also had watermelon, bananas and some other goodies to munch on after the race. For some of the youngsters, they participated in hula hoop and limbo contests.

The event attracted a record 340 participants, who ran or walked a redesigned course, which included a common start and finish line. Before the 5K, a 1-mile fun run was conducted, and dogs on leashes were welcomed.