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GCU Running Club Drinks In the Hot Chocolate 15k & 5k

December 4, 2017

By: Ruby Arani/ GCU Staff

A swarm of 5000 runners.  Hard to stand out.  Two Lopes didn’t find it difficult at all.

This past Sunday, the Grand Canyon University Running Club participated in the Annual Hot Chocolate 15k and 5k in Scottsdale. Fifteen Lopes took to the starting line in the sea of 5,000 other runners who attended America’s sweetest race.

Two Lopes stood out in both the 15k and 5k races.

Lopes’ freshman Noah Abraham finished the 15k race (9.3 miles) with an impressive time of 1:00:34. Abraham placed 24th overall out of 3,337 runners, and placed fourth in his age group (Male 15-19) out of 33.

“About two months ago, I sprained my ankle and took a month off running,” said Abraham. “Since then, I have trained for a month, and put in some base miles to prepare me for this race. I felt really good during the race, and surprised myself that I was able to maintain my pace. From this race, I learned that I can do more than what I think. I gave my all during this race, and had a good race,” he added.

Lopes’ freshman Ryan McQuillan ran the 5k race with a remarkable time of 17:11. Overall, McQuillan finished second out of 5,123 runners, and finished in first place out of 79 runners in his age group (Male 15-19).

“During the race, I felt really good,” said McQuillan. “After the race, I knew I had improved, but I had no idea I finished second overall! I just kept pushing myself, even though there were different obstacles in my way, and I learned not to doubt my abilities – especially when there is a lot of people in a single race,” he said.

The Hot Chocolate 15k and 5k is “America’s Sweetest Race” where participants race and receive a chocolatey goodie bag.   Proceeds from the race benefit the Make a Wish Foundation, which helps children with critical illnesses.

GCU Running Club 15k Standouts

Kristen Barnett Female 15-19 26th 1517th 1:40:07
Manuel Madrid Male 20-24 4th 67th 1:06:53
Spencer Bruton Male 15-19 22nd 632nd 1:20:30
Julia Allen Female 15-19 4th 196th 1:14:52
Aislynn Brant Female 20-24 12th 234th 1:16:23
Coach Kim Sims Female 45-49 12th 370nd 1:20:40


GCU Running Club 5k Contender

Nathan Wilch Male 15-19 7th 36th 20:46:00
Jessica Diaz Female 15-19 7th 91st 23:12
Bridget Marvin Female 15-19 3rd 42nd 21:01
Kaylee Padour Female 15-19 5th 22:40
Kaley Ault Female 20-24 5th 226nd 25:54:00
Andi Bergman Female 20-24 8th 298nd 26:36:00


The Lopes will race again this weekend at the 12k’s of Christmas in Gilbert.