Holly Nearman made sure there would be no Sigl family coronation at the 31st annual Crazylegs Classic.
Minutes after Tyler Sigl cruised to the overall title in Saturday’s cold and windy 8-kilometer event, Nearman, a former Monroe athlete, trotted into Camp Randall Stadium to win the women’s championship in a time of 28 minutes, 59 seconds.
Sigl’s wife of nearly two years, Jessica, finished runner-up by 23 seconds (29:22) to fall just short of a spousal sweep.
Verona’s Katie Howery, last year’s runner-up, took third (29:26).
“You always hope to win, but you never know,” said the 25-year-old Nearman, who was twice named a first-team All-Horizon League selection during her collegiate cross country career at UW-Milwaukee.
“There’s so many variables. The weather, who’s going to turn up. So I just got lucky (and) had a good performance today. I’m happy with it.”
Jessica Sigl, formerly Jessica Scott — she won the Division III national championship in the 800 meters at UW-Platteville, where she met Tyler, in 2008 — held a slim cushion over Nearman until close to the race’s halfway point, when the eventual winner took the lead for good.
While her husband’s performance was no surprise — Tyler finished second at the Crazylegs in both 2010 and 2011 — Jessica’s effort came somewhat unexpectedly considering she is still recovering from a hamstring strain.
“I figured she’d be top five,” Tyler said of his wife, who is in the last semester of a doctorate program in physical therapy at the University of Wisconsin. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Platteville in 2009.
“Usually there’s some pretty stud women (runners) that come here so for her to be second, that’s pretty cool.”
Nearman, much like the rest of the race’s competitors, wasn’t looking forward to running in the dismal conditions but said the constant drizzle actually helped take her mind off the task at hand.
“It actually turned out pretty well,” said Nearman, who is currently interning as a reporter with the Milwaukee-based blog ThirdCoast Digest. “Better than (was forecasted). Can’t really complain about this.”