Regional Award Winners for 2011 Released for Division II Cross Country

By Tom Lewis, USTFCCCA

November 8, 2011   

NEW ORLEANS – The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) announced on Tuesday the winners of USTFCCCA Region Athletes and Coaches of the Year honors for the 2011 cross country season in Division II as voted by the division’s coaches.

The GNAC will host the NCAA Division II Cross Country Championships, Saturday, November 19, at the Plantes Ferry Sports Complex in Spokane, Wash.

The USTFCCCA will release the final regular-season national coaches’ poll of the season in Division II on Wednesday.

USTFCCCA Division II Cross Country Region Athletes and Coaches of the Year

Men’s Athlete of the Year

ATLANTIC REGION – Alex Monroe, Lock Haven
A sophomore from Lewistown, Pa., Monroe won the Atlantic regional by nine seconds over Edinboro’s Scott Anderson. Anderson was also the PSAC Champion in 2011.

Recent Winners:
2010: Nathan Zondlo, Lock Haven
2009: Ben Hahn, Edinboro
2008: Chris Clark, California (Pa.)

CENTRAL REGION – Gabriel Proctor, Western State
Proctor, a senior from Corinth, Maine, took the Central Region crown by two seconds over Adams State’s Tabor Stevens. Proctor was fifth at the RMAC Championships.

Recent Winners:
2010: Ben Zywicki, Colorado Mines
2009: Reuben Mwei, Adams State
2008: Aaron Braun, Adams State

EAST REGION – Glarius Rop, American International
A junior from Eldoret, Kenya, Rop took the East Region’s 10k title in 29:50, a minute and 12 seconds ahead of the nearest challenger – Adelphi’s Andrew Coelho. Rop, who has won this award twice in three years, was the Northeast-10 Champion this season as well.

Recent Winners:
2010: Jeff Veiga, UMass Lowell
2009: Glarius Rop, American International
2008: Ruben Sanca, UMass Lowell

MIDWEST REGION – Anthony Witt, Grand Valley State
Witt, a senior from Jasonville, Ind., won the Midwest Region title in 31:58 over teammate Tyler Emmorey by two seconds. Witt also was crowned as the GLIAC Champion earlier in the season.

Recent Winners:
2010: Tyler Emmorey, Grand Valley State
2009: Tyler Emmorey, Grand Valley State
2008: Chris Hammer, Grand Valley State

SOUTH REGION – Moses Kirui, Florida Tech
A junior from Eldoret, Kenya, Kirui won the South over Alabama-Huntsville’s Josh Moshier by 11 seconds. He was also the winner of the Sunshine State Championship title by eight seconds.

Recent Winners:
2010: Daniel Kirwa, Harding
2009: Daniel Kirwa, Harding
2008: Daniel Kirwa, Harding

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION – Laban Sialo, Central Missouri
Sialo, a junior from Kapsabet, Kenya, turned in a 32-second victory in the South Central with a 30:33 clocking. He was the champion of the MIAA for the second-straight year.

Recent Winners:
2010: Amos Sang, Abilene Christian
2009: Amos Sang, Abilene Christian
2008: Julius Nyango, Abilene Christian

SOUTHEAST REGION – Pardon Ndhlovu, UNC Pembroke
Ndholvu, a junior from Harare, Zimbabwe, took the Southeast Region’s race in 30:55, 14 seconds ahead of Queens’ Felix Duchampt. He was also the Peach Belt winner in 2011.

Recent Winners:
2010: Meshack Koyiaki, Columbus State
2009: Oscar Ogwaro, Queens (N.C.)
2008: Oscar Ogwaro, Queens (N.C.)

WEST REGION – Micah Chelimo, Alaska Anchorage
Chelimo, a junior from Kapkoi, Kenya, won a hotly-contest West regional race over Chico State’s Issac Chavez and Northwest Nazarene’s Barak Watson. Chelimo also took the GNAC crown this season.

Recent Winners:
2010: Marko Cheseto, Alaska Anchorage
2009: Marko Cheseto, Alaska Anchorage
2008: Scott Bauhs, Chico State

Women’s Athletes of the Year

ATLANTIC REGION – Neely Spence, Shippensburg
Spence, a senior from Shippensburg, Pa., captured her fourth-straight Atlantic Region crown and won the region this season by nearly a full minute with a 20:43 performance in the 6k. Earlier, Spence became the first in PSAC history to win four-straight league cross country crowns.

Recent Winners:
2010: Neely Spence, Shippensburg
2009: Neely Spence, Shippensburg
2008: Neely Spence, Shippensburg

CENTRAL REGION – Lauren Kleppin, Western State
Kleppin, a senior from South Milwaukee, Wis., won the Central region by 19 seconds with a 22:13 run. As part of an undefeated season, Kleppin took the RMAC crown by 16 seconds.

Recent Winners:
2010: Kristen McGlynn, Adams State
2009: Morgan Place, Minnesota Duluth
2008: Shannon Payne, UC-Colorado Springs

EAST REGION – Jeptui Cherutich, American International
A junior from Springfield, Mass., Cherutich claimed a four-second victory over Bentley’s Tara Dooley with a 21:54 school-record run for the East region title. She also claimed the Northeast-10 title this season.

Recent Winners:
2010: Jeptui Cherutich, American International
2009: Erin Carmone, Stonehill
2008: Christina Dalomba, UMass Lowell

MIDWEST REGION – Amanda Putt, Hillsdale
Putt, a junior from Adrian, Mich., won the Midwest crown by nine seconds over Ferris State’s Anna Rudd. Putt was the Michigan Intercollegiate champion and finished sixth at the GLIAC Championships.

Recent Winners:
2010: Christina Muir, Ferris State
2009: Christina Muir, Ferris State
2008: Rachelle Malette, Wayne State (Mich.)

SOUTH REGION – Heather Nicolosi, Tampa
Nicolosi, a senior from Seminole, Fla., won the South by nearly 30 seconds with a course-record time of 21:43 for her second-straight regional title.

Recent Winners:
2010: Heather Nicolosi, Tampa
2009: Sara Trane, Florida Tech
2008: Jessica Forrester, Tampa

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION – Chloe Susset, Abilene Christian
Susset, a junior from Clery Vexin, France, won the South Central by eight seconds over Missouri Southern’s Marlee Tegenkamp. She placed second at the Lone Star Conference meet.

Recent Winners:
2010: Anais Belledant, Abilene Christian
2009: Kimi Shank, Missouri Southern
2008: Kimi Shank, Missouri Southern

SOUTHEAST REGION – Kate Griewisch, Lenoir-Rhyne
A senior from Banner Elk, N.C., Griewisch took the Southeast crown wire-to-wire with a 40-second victory on the field in gaining her third-straight region title. She also took the South Atlantic Conference title for the second time in three years.

Recent Winners:
2010: Kate Griewisch, Lenoir-Rhyne
2009: Kate Griewisch, Lenoir-Rhyne
2008: Allison Kreutzer, Clayton State

WEST REGION – Ruth Keino, Alaska Anchorage
Keino, a senior from Kapcheno, Kenya, won the West in 20:51, 27 seconds ahead of Humboldt State’s Bridget Berg. She also captured the GNAC title this season.

Recent Winners:
2010: Sarah Porter, Western Washington
2009: Jessica Pixler, Seattle Pacific
2008: Jessica Pixler, Seattle Pacific

Men’s Coaches of the Year

ATLANTIC REGION – Doug Watts, Edinboro
Edinboro captured their first Atlantic Region crown since 2007 and their 21st overall for Doug Watts in his 43rd year at the helm of the Scots. This season, his squad also won their first PSAC title since 2008

Recent Winners:
2010: Aaron Russell, Lock Haven
2009: Steve Spence, Shippensburg
2008: Aaron Russell, Lock Haven

CENTRAL REGION – Damon Martin, Adams State
The Grizzlies won the Central, 28-61 over nearest challenger Western State, placing their five scorers in the race’s overall top ten. Adams State, headed by Martin in his 17th year at the school, was runner-up in the RMAC this season.
Recent Winners:
2010: Damon Martin, Adams State
2009: Damon Martin, Adams State
2008: Damon Martin, Adams State

EAST REGION – Gary Gardner, UMass Lowell
Gardner, in his tenth year with UMass Lowell, led his squad to a sixth-straight East region crown with a 71-77 battle win over Stonehill. The Riverhawks were third at the Northeast-10 meet this year.

Recent Winners:
2010: Gary Gardner, UMass Lowell
2009: Gary Gardner, UMass Lowell
2008: Gary Gardner, UMass Lowell

MIDWEST REGION – Jerry Baltes, Grand Valley State
Baltes’crew scored just 20 points to win the Midwest region with a 1-2-4-5-8 finish – good for a tenth-straight region crown. Baltes, in his 13th year at GVSU, also led the Lakers to a tenth-straight GLIAC title this season.

Recent Winners:
2010: Jerry Baltes, Grand Valley State
2009: Jenny Bellsky, Saginaw Valley State
2008: Jerry Baltes, Grand Valley State

SOUTH REGION – David Cain, Alabama-Huntsville
Alabama-Huntsville, headed by David Cain in his 14th year at the school, took first in the South Region for the first time since 2007 as the squad placed their top four scorers in the race’s top ten. In addition this season, UAH to the Gulf South crown for the first time since 2007.

Recent Winners:
2010: Steve Guymon, Harding
2009: Steve Guymon, Harding
2008: Steve Guymon, Harding

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION – Mike Harney, Eastern New Mexico
The Greyhounds of Eastern New Mexico with first-year coach Mike Harney at the helm won the South Central championship for the first time in school history. The squad won with 53 points, placing four in the top 15, to top East Central’s 59. Earlier in the season, Eastern New Mexico won their first Lone Star Conference title in school history.

Recent Winners:
2010: Kirk Pedersen, Central Missouri
2009: Tom Rutledge, Missouri Southern
2008: Sam Burroughs, Abilene Christian

SOUTHEAST REGION – Scott Simmons, Queens (N.C.)
Simmons’ Royals won the Southeast region with a 62-82 victory over Mount Olive. Placing their top four in the region’s top seven, Queens captured their fifth-straight region title. They swept the top four spots at the Conference Carolinas Championships for the third-straight league crown in a row. Simmons is in his fourth year as coach at Queens.

Recent Winners:
2010: Mike Owens, Mars Hill
2009: Scott Simmons, Queens (N.C.)
2008: Scott Summers, Queens (N.C.)

WEST REGION – Michael Friess, Alaska Anchorage
Alaska Anchorage won the West, 37-39, with a big challenge from Chico State. The Seawolves won their second-straight region crown with three runners in the race’s top ten and all five scorers in the top 13. Freiss in his 21st year at the helm, also led the squad to a first-place finish at the GNAC Championships.

Recent Winners:
2010: Michael Friess, Alaska Anchorage
2009: Gary Towne, Chico State
2008: Gary Towne, Chico State

Women’s Coaches of the Year

ATLANTIC REGION – Steve Spence, Shippensburg
Spence, in his 14th year at Shippensburg, and his squad won the Atlantic region for the fourth-straight year. This year, the region was won by over 50 points, thanks to a 1-2 finish and placing the team’s five scorers in the race’s top 20. Shippensburg also took the PSAC crown for a fourth-straight year.

Recent Winners:
2010: Steve Spence, Shippensburg
2009: Steve Spence, Shippensburg
2008: Steve Spence, Shippensburg

CENTRAL REGION – Jennifer Michel, Western State
Western State claimed their first region title since 2006 as Michel’s top four runners finished in the race’s top nine for a 37-47 win over Adams State. The Mountaineers also won the RMAC title for Michel who is in her fifth year as the leader of the squad.

Recent Winners:
2010: Damon Martin, Adams State
2009: Damon Martin, Adams State
2008: Damon Martin, Adams State

EAST REGION – Karen Boen, Stonehill
Boen’s Stonehill bunch won their third-straight region crown, going 8-10-12-13-14 in the race to score a 57-99 victory over Bentley. The Skyhawks also won their third-straight Northeast-10 title this season for Boen in her 14th year at Stonehill.

Recent Winners:
2010: Andrew Rickert, Saint Rose
2009: Karen Boen, Stonehill
2008: Gary Gardner, UMass Lowell

MIDWEST REGION – Rod Cowan, Saginaw Valley State
Second-year coach Rod Cowan’s Saginaw Valley State squad improved from a ninth-place regional showing a year ago to place third in this year’s race – an effort that resulted in the team’s first-ever berth to the NCAA Championships. SVSU also placed third in the GLIAC this year.

Recent Winners:
2010: Jerry Baltes, Grand Valley State
2009: Jerry Baltes, Grand Valley State
2008: Jerry Baltes, Grand Valley State

SOUTH REGION – Jarrett Slaven, Tampa
Slaven’s Spartans scored just 28 points for a near-100-point victory to take the South region. His top four scorers placed in the race’s top ten and included region winner Heather Nicolosi. Tampa also won the Sunshine State title this season for the eighth time in nine years. Slaven is in his 13th year at Tampa.

Recent Winners:
2010: Jarrett Slaven, Tampa
2009: Jarrett Slaven, Tampa
2008: Jarrett Slaven, Tampa

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION – Koby Styles, Midwestern State
Midwestern State won the South Central region for the first time in school history with a 102-118 victory over Pittsburg State. The squad had four finish in the region’s top 25 for USTFCCCA All-Region honors, including third-place finisher Brissia Montalvo. Styles’ team also won the Lone Star Conference for the fourth-straight year. Styles is in his fifth year at Midwestern State.

Recent Winners:
2010: Russ Jewett, Pittsburg State
2009: Patty Vavra, Missouri Southern
2008: Koby Styles, Midwestern State

SOUTHEAST REGION – Tommy Barksdale, Montevallo
First-year coach Tommy Barksdale helped Montevallo to their first-ever team appearance in the NCAA Cross Country Championships as his squad finished second at the Southeast regional, improving from a 13th-place showing the previous year. In addition, with a Peach Belt Championship, Montevallo won their first league title for any women’s program.

Recent Winners:
2010: Scott Simmons, Queens (N.C.)
2009: J.D. Evilsizer, Columbus State
2008: Craig McPhail, Lees-McRae

WEST REGION – Michael Friess, Alaska Anchorage
The Seawolves won the West with just 27 points as the top five scorers went 1-3-4-7-13 in the region race for the squad’s third-consecutive region title. Alaska Anchorage also won the GNAC title. Friess is in his 21st year at UAA.
Recent Winners:
2010: Michael Friess, Alaska Anchorage
2009: Michael Friess, Alaska Anchorage
2008: Gary Towne, Chico State