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Forlenza wins Gabe Vitale 5K

In his debut Forlenza took the lead from Phil Jackette, a runner at Martin Luther High in Maspeth, after the first mile and captured the 3.1-mile...

Archbishop Molloy senior Keith Forlenza won the Gabriel Vitale 5K Memorial Run in College Point last week.

In his debut Forlenza took the lead from Phil Jackette, a runner at Martin Luther High in Maspeth, after the first mile and captured the 3.1-mile race over the two loop course in a field of 160 entries.

Forlenza, who is training for the cross country season in the fall, covered the challenging course in 17:23.

“I had (John) Montes on my back the whole way,” said Forlenza, who “shook him off as I tried to throw it on him during the last mile.”

The Whitestone resident, whose best time for a 5K is 17:08, finished ahead of Montes (17:40) and William Schaaf (17:45). Rounding out the top five were Matt Dispensa (17:53) and Alex Kalinkos (17:57).

The women’s winner was Amy Rustan, who covered the course in 19:54.

Former St. Francis Prep basketball player Matt Fryer was clocked at 20:50 and won his age bracket (20-29), one spot ahead of Steve Carasso, who along with Joe Aylward and Kisoo Kim won the team precinct title for the 109th Precinct.

The race was named after Gabe Vitale, a police officer who was killed in the line of duty in 1980. His son Mark Vitale represented the immediate family in the race.

“We had a great race,” Mark Vitale said. “We look forward to it every year. My family appreciates the College Point Road Runners Track Club and Leo Nicholas for putting on the race. It means a lot to us, they did a great job.”

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