National Athletes of the Year in Division III Announced
NEW ORLEANS – Delannie Spriggs of Salisbury, Jake Winder of North Central (Ill.), Marie Borner of Bethel (Minn.) and Kristen Bates of Messiah were recognized Thursday by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) as recipients of National Athlete of the Year Awards as chosen by the nation’s coaches for the indoor track & field season in Division III.
NATIONAL MALE TRACK ATHLETE OF THE YEAR: Delannie Spriggs, Salisbury
Spriggs, a senior from Owings, Md., won the NCAA championship at 55 meters, resetting an 11-year old meet-record time with a clocking of 6.20. In the preliminary heats, Spriggs ran what was the best of the season in Division III with a 6.26 to lead all qualifiers. Spriggs is the first from Salisbury to win an individual-event national title indoors. Also this season, Spriggs won the Mason Dixon Conference title at 55 meters and went undefeated in the 55 and 60 throughout the season.
NATIONAL MALE FIELD ATHLETE OF THE YEAR: Jake Winder, North Central (Ill.)
Winder, a senior from Joliet, Ill., won his second-consecutive NCAA pole vault crown as the only to clear 16-9½ (5.12m) at the championship meet. Winder is the first since Hans Schmidt of UW La Crosse to win back-to-back vaulting titles and helped the Cardinals to their first national team title since 1989. Winder had Division III’s best clearance of the season with a 17-4½ (5.30m) conference-record effort in winning the CCIW Championship.
NATIONAL FEMALE TRACK ATHLETE OF THE YEAR: Marie Borner, Bethel (Minn.)
Borner, a senior from Cottage Grove, Minn., won the NCAA mile for the second time in her career with a Division III season best clocking of 4:50.20. Borner took the title over DePauw’s Lauren Reich by over seven seconds for the championship. Borner’s season best 800-meter time of 2:11.39 finished the season ranked in the division’s top five. Earlier in the season, Borner also claimed MIAC conference titles in the mile and 1000 meters.
NATIONAL FEMALE FIELD ATHLETE OF THE YEAR: Kristen Bates, Messiah
Bates, a senior from Landisburg, Pa., landed two NCAA titles this indoor season, taking top honors in both the pentathlon and 55-meter hurdles. Bates ran the finals of the 55-meter hurdles in 8.00 seconds and shortly thereafter finished the pentathlon with the 800-meter (2:30.91), all of which came within five minutes of each other. Bates’ 3,555 points in the pentathlon topped the field by 61 points. Bates also claimed a time of 7.89 in the preliminary rounds of the 55-meter hurdles for the best time by a Division III athlete this year. Bates, the MAC Indoor Field MVP and High Point Athlete, won the long jump, triple jump, and high jump at her conference championships.
The USTFCCCA will announce recipients of the National Assistant Coach of the Year and National Coach of the Year awards in Division III on Friday.