PUTNAM - When people say Lee Berube is an All-American young man, it's not hyperbole.
The Ticonderoga High graduate and Putnam resident is an All American - twice.
Berube finished second in the 5,000-meter race at the NCAA Division III indoor track championships in Greencastle, Ind., March 13.
A member of the SUNY-Geneseo team, he then ran a leg on the school's distance medley relay team that finished eighth at the national championship meet.
The top eight finishers in each event are named All America.
Berube is the son of Ellie and Jesse Berube of Putnam.
"I'm really excited," Berube said of his 5K performance at the national championships. "It's probably the best race of my life and I did it at a national championship meet."
The 5K was a tactical race. Runners passed the mile in 4 minutes, 47 seconds and two miles in 9:48.
"No one wanted to take the lead," Berube said. "In the final mile I decided to go for it."
He ran the final mile in 4:33, but it wasn't quite good enough. Kyle Brady of North Central (Ill.) College passed him in the final meters to win in 14:47. Berube was second in 14:49.
"I just couldn't respond when he (Brady) made his move," Berube said. "I had nothing left. I just made sure I kept my arms and legs moving toward the finish."
Jay Wells, Berube's distance coach at Ti High, shared in the All-America excitement.
"He ran a great race," Wells said. "He's really running well - and he can run better."
The race was redemption for Berube, a sophomore, who won the state Class D cross county championship while at Ti High. Last fall he had a bad race at the NCAA cross country championship meet, finishing 80th.
"It was a bad race, but it gave me a lot of motivation," Berube said. "I really wanted to run well this winter."