NEW ORLEANS – The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) announced on Thursday that New Haven’s Shannon Gagne and Central Missouri’s Linsday Lettow were selected by the nation’s coaches as the Women’s Division II Track & Field National Athletes of the Year for the 2011 outdoor season.
NATIONAL WOMEN’S TRACK ATHLETE OF THE YEAR: Shannon Gagne, New Haven
Gagne, a senior from Meriden, Conn., won the NCAA-championship crowns in the 200- and 400-meter dash, becoming the first to accomplish such a double since Lincoln’s Davita Prendergast in 2007. In addition, Gagne placed fifth in the long jump at the national meet to account for all of New Haven’s 24 team points, leading to a national top-ten team finish.
Earlier in the year, Gagne captured Northeast-10 Conference titles in the 100, 200, and as a member of the team’s 4×100-relay squad.
2011: Shannon Gagne, New Haven
2010: Jessica Pixler, Seattle Pacific
2009: Ashley Puga, Northwest Nazarene
2008: Kirby Blackley, Findlay
2007: Mandy Zemba, Grand Valley State
2006: Mandy Zemba, Grand Valley State
NATIONAL WOMEN’S FIELD ATHLETE OF THE YEAR: Lindsay Lettow, Central Missouri
Lettow, a junior from Urbandale, Iowa, won the NCAA title in the heptathlon, scoring 5,514 points in a 129-point victory over UC San Diego’s Stephanie LeFever. Lettow also placed sixth in the 400 hurdles at the NCAA meet and competed in three other events for the NCAA meet, including the high jump, long jump, and 400-meter hurdles.
Lettow also ended the season as the Division’s leader in the heptathlon with a season-best 5,610 points in March. Lettow was also the MIAA heptathlon champion this year.
2011: Lindsay Lettow, Central Missouri
2010: Aisha Adams, Angelo State
2009: Aisha Adams, Angelo State
2008: Whitney Johnson, UC San Diego
2007: Kwonya Ferguson, Saint Augustine’s
2006: Cecilia Barnes, Cal State Bakersfield