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Former Liberty runner places 22nd in Boston Marathon

April 19, 2011 : David Hylton/Liberty University News Service

Former Liberty University cross country/track & field runner Kalib Wilkinson placed 22nd in Monday’s Boston Marathon, one of the premier running events in the world.

Wilkinson, who ran at Liberty between 2007-2009, clocked a personal-best time of 2:19:53, finishing sixth among American entrants.

“I felt like the Lord was carrying me yesterday,” said Wilkinson, who is now a graduate student and a care officer in Liberty's Student Care Office. “There were points in the race where I wanted to give up because of the way I was feeling, but I kept going back to my theme for this race, which was ‘Run in the Spirit.’ … The Lord carried me by pointing my eyes, heart and hope to the Spirit of God, to look to the Lord, know He is present, delight in Him and run in tandem with Him.”

Wilkinson’s time was less than a minute shy of his goal of a sub-2:19 marathon, which would have qualified him for the Olympic Trials.

“This feeling of disappointment was overshadowed greatly by the relief the sight of a marathon finish line always brings,” he said, “and overwhelming gratefulness to the Lord for getting me there, and faster than ever before, knowing He had run with me the entire 26.2 miles.”

The men’s marathon saw many records fall – winner Geoffry Mutai of Kenya clocked the fastest marathon ever at 2:03:02 and Ryan Hall set an American record with a time of 2:04:58.

Wilkinson said Hall “is my running hero. He, too, runs with the Lord.”

Nearly 27,000 runners took part in the 115th running of this year’s Boston Marathon.