Noah Mortenson runs down the finishing stretch of the Leaf Cruncher 5K on Saturday at Loudy-Simpson Park. Mortenson was the top finisher in the boys 13-and-younger age group of the race.

Photo by Nate Waggenspack

Noah Mortenson runs down the finishing stretch of the Leaf Cruncher 5K on Saturday at Loudy-Simpson Park. Mortenson was the top finisher in the boys 13-and-younger age group of the race.

More than 100 run in Leaf Cruncher 5K in Craig

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— Friends of Moffat County Education kicked off the day of the high school cross-country meet in Craig with a race of its own.

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Age group winners, from left, include Ben Roach, Todd Trapp, Emaleigh Papierski and Noah Mortenson pose with their prizes after the Leaf Cruncher 5K on Saturday at Loudy-Simpson Park.

The Leaf Cruncher 5K and 1-Mile Family Fun Run got going at 8 a.m. Saturday at Loudy-Simpson Park with more than 100 participants, according to registration numbers provided by Friends of Moffat County Education.

With framed photos from some of the most picturesque locations in Northwest Colorado on the line for the winners, runners from the area turned in some tough performances.

Todd Trapp was the men’s overall winner, crossing the finish line in 18 minutes, 53 seconds. Trapp also won Friends of Moffat County Education's last 5K, the 2013 Wake the Whittler at the beginning of the summer.

Noah Mortenson was the top boys runner in the 13-and-younger division, and Ben Roach won the boys 13 to 18 age group.

Emaleigh Papierski won in the girls 13-and-younger age group, and Mackenzie Camblin and Tiarra Schroeder ran together the entire way and shared the title for the girls 13 to 18 age group.

The race began in chilly conditions, but the sun came out and provided near perfect weather for the race and the fun run for kids to follow.

“It was a little muddy out there, but it was good,” Papierski said, referring to a section of the course near the soccer fields where everybody’s feet got a bit wet.

Papierski was happy with the way she ran Saturday, she said.

All participating runners got a T-shirt to commemorate the race, and the rest of the proceeds will go toward funding Friends of Moffat County Education initiatives. The group's Chris Jones thanked all those who came out and supported the organization.

“We appreciate everybody coming and helping us out,” he said before the race. “Without you guys, we wouldn’t be able to do a lot of what we do.”

Nate Waggenspack can be reached at 970-875-1795 or nwaggenspack@CraigDailyPress.com.

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