Lofton, Baltes Receive D-II National Coaches of the Year Nods

By Tom Lewis, USTFCCCA

March 17, 2011   

NEW ORLEANS – The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) announces the National Head Coaches of the Year for the 2011 NCAA Division II Indoor Track & Field season. With just six meet entries, Abilene Christian second-year coach Roosevelt Lofton, the National Men’s Head Coach of the Year, led the Wildcats to their first NCAA men’s team title since 2005. Grand Valley State’s Jerry Baltes was named National Women’s Head Coach of the Year for the third time in five years as his Lakers won their first NCAA indoor team crown in school history.

National Men’s Head Coach of the Year
Roosevelt Lofton, Abilene Christian

Lofton’s Wildcats entered the NCAA Indoor Championships as the fifth-ranked team and had just six entries compared to top-ranked Lincoln (Mo.)’s 14. ACU won the men’s national team title with 49 points – the lowest-winning point total in NCAA D-II indoor history and extended their record to 13 men’s NCAA D-II indoor crowns. Ashland claimed runner-up in the team race with 42 while defending champion Lincoln (Mo.) placed third with 41 and Central Missouri placed fourth with 36½.

For Abilene Christian, senior Amos Sang won the 5000-meter title and added second-place points in the mile. Senior Ramon Sparks won his second-straight triple jump crown. Desmond Jackson was runner-up in both the 60 and 200. And, junior Nick Jones added into the fun with a fourth-place finish.

Recent Winners:
2011: Roosevelt Lofton, Abilene Christian
2010: Damon Martin, Adams State
2009: Jud Logan, Ashland
2008: David Astrauskas, SIU Edwardsville
2007: George Williams, Saint Augustine’s


National Women’s Head Coach of the Year
Jerry Baltes, Grand Valley State

The women of Grand Valley State, coached by Baltes, had little trouble in winning their first NCAA D-II indoor crown in school history. Many of the same elements that helped the Lakers to a national cross country crown in the fall were crucial in securing the squad’s 83-point total. Junior Monica Kinney won the mile and the 5000 meters, and topped defending 5k champion Neely Spence of Shippensburg in the process. Also claiming an individual crown for the Lakers was junior Lauren Buresh in the shot put.

In addition this season, Baltes led the Lakers to the GLIAC Championship with meet record 238 points, more than doubling the total of the second-place team. The Lakers was represented in 19 events at the NCAA Indoor Championship meet. GVSU was ranked as the No. 1 team in the nation throughout the year.

Recent Winners:
2011: Jerry Baltes, Grand Valley State
2010: Victor Thomas, Lincoln (Mo.)
2009: Jerry Baltes, Grand Valley State
2008: Jud Logan, Ashland
2007: Jerry Baltes, Grand Valley State