Lalang, Drouin, D’Agostino & Geubelle Named DI Indoor National Athletes of the Year

Courtesy: Kyle Terwillegar, USTFCCCA

March 12, 2013   

NEW ORLEANS – The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) announces the National Athlete of the Year award winners for 2013 NCAA Division I Indoor Track & Field season as chosen by the nation’s coaches. Arizona’s Lawi Lalang, Indiana’s Derek Drouin, Dartmouth’s Abbey D’Agostino, and Kansas’ Andrea Geubelle claimed honors as National Athletes of the Year.

National Athletes of the Year for Divisions II and III will be released Wednesday, while National Coaches of the Year for all divisions will be released Thursday and Friday.

National Men’s Track Athlete of the Year

Lawi Lalang, Arizona

Lalang, a junior from Eldoret, Kenya, earns the award for the second consecutive season after completing NCAA indoor championships in two events for the second straight year. After claiming titles at 3000 and 5000 meters in 2012, Lalang came back this season and won in the mile and at 3000 meters – both in meet-record fashion. He is the first to complete this double since Washington State’s Bernard Lagat in 1999.

After qualifying for the mile finals Friday, Lalang on Saturday won the mile wire-to-wire in a meet-record 3:54.74, breaking Michigan’s Kevin Sullivan’s 3:55.33 set in 1995. Less than two hours later he again won in wire-to-wire style at 3000 in 7:45.94, breaking Colorado’s Adam Goucher’s previous mark of 7:46.03 from 1998.

He became the first collegian to run multiple sub-3:55.00 indoor miles dating back to his 3:54.56 showing at the Millrose Games’ Wanamaker Mile. Three of the top seven collegiate indoor miles now belong to Lalang. His name also appears multiple times on the all-time collegiate 3000 meters list; his 2013 collegiate-best 7:42.79 earlier this season at the Razorback Invitational is third all-time among collegians, and his NCAA indoor performance is No. 10.

Recent Winners:
2013: Lawi Lalang, Arizona
2012: Lawi Lalang, Arizona
2011: Miles Batty, BYU
2010: Torrin Lawrence, Georgia
2009: Galen Rupp, Oregon
2008: Leo Manzano, Texas
2007: Chris Solinsky, Wisconsin
2006: Xavier Carter, LSU

National Men’s Field Athlete of the Year

Derek Drouin, Indiana

Drouin, a senior from Corunna, Ontario, wins the indoor award for the second time in his career, dating back to 2011. The Olympic bronze medalist won the NCAA indoor high jump with a clearance of 7-8½ (2.35m) without missing through his first seven heights. The mark is the best since 1990 and second-best in collegiate history and he is just one of three collegians to ever clear 7-8 (2.34m) indoors, joining colleigate record-holder Hollis Conway of Louisiana-Lafayette (7-9¼/2.37m) and Brian Brown of Northwestern State.

The NCAA title is the third of Drouin’s career indoors, making him the first to garner a trio of titles . His winning mark was also a Canadian indoor record. Not only did Drouin win the NCAA title by 2½ inches, he did so against one of the most competitive collegiate high jump fields ever assembled, as seven jumpers all cleared 7-5 (2.26m).

He took three attempts at a new collegiate record of 7-9½ (2.38m), barely missing on three attempts. His season-best of 7-7¼ entering the meet was displaced from the all-time collegiate top 10 to No. 11 with is NCAA jump, but he still owns two of the top 10.

Drouin won the Big Ten Championships title in the high jump.

Recent Winners:
2013: Derek Drouin, Indiana
2012: Curtis Beach, Duke
2011: Derek Drouin, Indiana
2010: Ashton Eaton, Oregon
2009: Ashton Eaton, Oregon
2008: Ryan Whiting, Arizona State
2007: Donovan Kilmartin, Texas
Donald Thomas, Auburn
2006: Trey Hardee, Texas

National Women’s Track Athlete of the Year

Abbey D’Agostino, Dartmouth

D’Agostino, a junior from Topsfield, Mass., became the first American woman to win two distance events at one NCAA Championship meet with her double at 3000 and 5000 meters. On Friday, D’Agostino took the crown at 5000 meters in 15:28.11 to claim the race by more than 5½ seconds over runner-up Betsy Saina of Iowa State, who entered the meet as the top seed in the event. D’Agostino’s time at 5000 meters ranks her the No. 4 performer on the all-time indoor collegiate top 10 list with the fifth-fastest time.

She followed up her performance Friday with a title at 3000 meters – an event in which she entered as the No. 1 seed – in 9:01.08. She ran away from the field in the late stages of the race to claim victory over 2011 champ Jordan Hasay of Oregon by 5½ seconds.

D’Agostino’s 8:55.41 at 3000 meters was the top collegiate time of the season; her 4:30.03 mile at the Millrose Games’ Wanamaker Mile was the second-best and seventh-best all-time; and her NCAA 5000 performance was the third-fastest at the distance this season.

She won Ivy League indoor titles in the mile and at 5000 meters.

Recent Winners:
2013: Abbey D’Agostino, Dartmouth
2012: Diamond Dixon, Kansas
2011: Jordan Hasay, Oregon
2010: Francena McCorory, Hampton
2009: Jenny Barringer, Colorado
2008: Sally Kipyego, Texas Tech
2007: Kerron Stewart, Auburn
2006: Johanna Nilsson, Northern Arizona

National Women’s Field Athlete of the Year

Andrea Geubelle, Kansas

Geubelle, a senior from University Place, Wash., won both the long jump and the triple jump at the NCAA Indoor Championships, becoming the fourth woman in indoor NCAA history to accomplish the feat and the first since Elva Goulbourne of Auburn in 2003. Her winning triple jump distance of 46-6¼ (14.18m) won the event by more than a foot and put her third on the all-time indoor collegiate performance list. She is one of just five collegiate women in history to surpass 46-6.

The day prior she won the long jump with a mark of 21-6 (6.55m). Her mark tied Christabel Nettey of Arizona State’s mark, but Geubelle won on virtue of her second-longest attempt, which was just two centimeters shorter.

Geubelle finished the indoor season as the top-ranked student-athlete in both the triple jump and the long jump. She led the triple jump with her NCAA title mark, and claimed the long jump with a mark of 21-11½ (6.69m) at the Armory Collegiate Invitational. The long jump marks sits just outside the all-time collegiate top 10.

Recent Winners:
2013: Andrea Geubelle, Kansas
2012: Brianne Theisen, Oregon
2011: Brianne Theisen, Oregon
2010: Blessing Okagbare, UTEP
2009: Destinee Hooker, Texas
2008: Jacquelyn Johnson, Arizona State
2007: Brittany Riley, Southern Illinois
2006: Chelsea Johnson, UCLA