Carius, Stiles Named National Coaches of the Year in Division III

By Tom Lewis, USTFCCCA

November 23, 2011   

NEW ORLEANS – The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) announced on Wednesday that Al Carius of North Central (Ill.) and Jeff Stiles of Washington (Mo.) were named as National Coaches of the Year for the 2011 cross country season. Carius led North Central to their 14th national title in men’s cross country while Stiles led the Bears to the program’s first NCAA crown.

NATIONAL MEN’S COACH OF THE YEAR: Al Carius, North Central (Ill.)

North Central won their 14th national title in men’s cross country on Saturday with a 110-172 tally over runner-up Haverford. Sophomore Matthew Perez led the way for the Cardinals finishing in fifth overall, but as the third scorer. Senior Neil Klein finished 15th overall at NCC’s two-man and was followed by junior Dan Kerley (37th overall), sophomore Kevin Sparks (41st), and John Crain (48th) in rounding out the scoring five.

Early in the race, at the two-mile split, North Central’s men sat 11-24-86-93-105, but used the final two miles-plus to push through the field for the team victory.

Carius’s team in 2011 also won the NCAA Midwest Regional title by 72 points, 42-114 over runners-up Washington (Mo.). In addition, his squad won the CCIW title for the 38th-consecuvite time, doing so this fall with a perfect score. Carius is in his 46th year at North Central.

NATIONAL WOMEN’S COACH OF THE YEAR: Jeff Stiles, Washington (Mo.)

Washington’s women came away from the NCAA Division III Cross Country Championships with the program’s first-ever title, scoring 70 points to outpace defending champion Middlebury (111). The Bears were led by senior Erica Jackey who placed fourth overall despite being nine seconds back of the field after the first mile. Freshman Lucy Cheadle finished 20th overall, sophomore Sarah Fisher was 22nd, senior Molly Wawrzyniak took 23rd, and senior Elizabeth Phillips rounded out team scoring as the 40th overall finisher.

The team championship for Washington marked the seventh top-four finish at the National Championship in school history for the Washington U. women.

Stiles’ team also won the NCAA Midwest Regional with just 24 points, winning by 91 over UW-Eau Claire. The squad finished all seven runners in the overall top 20, going 2-3-4-6-9-14-19. In addition for Stiles in his 11th year at WASHU, the Bears won a third-straight UAA title this fall.