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DIMENTER, HANSON WIN ST. GEORGE MARATHON

SHARE DIMENTER, HANSON WIN ST. GEORGE MARATHON

Debbie Hanson of Pleasant Grove battled with Provo's Holly Ebert to win the 13th annual St. George Marathon in a dramatic come-from-behind win in the women's race Saturday. Hanson crossed the finish line in two hours, forty-one minutes, thirty five seconds, to get her first victory here.

The overall winner was Tyrus Dimenter of Los Angeles, who ran just over 2:20 two years ago, failing to make the Olympic Trials qualifying time. He returned Saturday to nail down a 2:19:06 and the victory.Dimenter's win was assured by mile 12 when he surged to the lead, knocking down 5:15 miles as if he was a running machine. The field slipped quickly behind as he continued his surge to the finish line next to St. George's Worthen Park.

The second man was Brian Larsen of Phoenix, Ariz., who led for a time but finished in 2:22:24. Third came Salt Lake's Clayton Johnson in 2:23:44. Fourth-place finisher was Dimenter's teammate, Javier Lara of Los Angeles, who finished in 2:24:40. Fifth man was Salt Laker Binesh Prasad, who represented Fiji in the Seoul Olympics. Prasad crossed the finish line in 2:25:44.

For the women, Debbie Hanson finally caught Provo's Holly Ebert at the 25-mile mark and then the two went after each other before Ebert, who was running her first marathon, finally relinquished the lead, psychologically beaten. She fiinshed one minute behind Hanson with a 2:42:39.

"I passed her at the 20-mile-mark aid station," said Ebert. "And then she came up on me at 25 miles and I couldn't believe it. I put in a surge and she reeled me in. I put in another surge and she reeled me in again. Then I tried to get away from her once more and she pulled me in for the third time. I just couldn't stay out there. I was hoping I wouldn't have to do that in the last mile of a marathon, especially since this is the first one I've ever done. I was so disappointed when she closed on me. She just beat me psychologically."

Hanson said she didn't expect to get away from Ebert since the Provo mother has consistently beaten her in shorter races throughout the past year.

"I just figured she was too strong for me and I was going to try to hold on as best I could," she said. "My strategy was just to go out and be comfortable through the early part of the race and pick it up for the last 10K. When I got in the city and eventually passed Holly I thought she would come back on me, but she was apparently unable to come back on me. I'll tell you, this is really wonderful, it's exciting."

Third woman was Santa Barbara, Calif., resident Mary Ryzner in 2:51:24.

Jim Petersen of Layton set a wheelchair record here with a 1:33:50, narrowly beating Rondo Poole's former record of 1:33:52. Poole came in second this year with a 1:41, and the third-place finsher was Brandon Harris of Ogden, who finished in 1:46:33. No women entered this year's wheelchair division.

Dimenter said he planned to reach the 20-mile mark and then run the best 10K of his life. He explained that he was pleased with his win but somewhat disappointed with his time. "We wanted something more like 2:17, but I'll certainly take it,' he said. "It's a personal record for me."