Adams State Claims First Jerry Baltes Division II Women’s Program of the Year Award
NEW ORLEANS – In what was the tightest finish of any Division II Program of the Year race ever and one of only four races among any Division or gender to ever be decided by just one point, the Adams State women edged out Grand Valley State for the 2013-14 Jerry Baltes Division II Women’s Program of the Year Award, presented by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA).
For the first time in the six-year history of the award – which last year was named after Grand Valley State head track & field and cross country coach Jerry Baltes – will not reside at GVSU’s campus in Allendale, Mich., as the ASU women narrowly defeated Baltes’ squad, seven points to eight, to end their streak of five consecutive awards.
Adams State had finished runner-up to GVSU in each of the five previous seasons since it was first awarded for the 2008-09 season.
MORE INFO: Award History
The USTFCCCA Program of the Year Award is awarded annually to the most outstanding cross country/track & field programs in each of the NCAA’s three divisions for each gender.
In order to be eligible for the award, teams must qualify for each of the NCAA Championships. Scoring is based on the team’s finish at each NCAA Championship in cross country and both indoor and outdoor track & field (i.e. 1st = 1 point, 2nd = 2 points, etc.) with the lowest total score for all three championships combined determining the award recipient. Ties among schools split points for positions taken.
The Grizzlies finished fourth at the recent NCAA Division II Outdoor Championships in Allendale, Mich., by just one team point over Ashland, avoiding a potential tie for the award with Grand Valley, which finished third on its home turf.
Adams State won their second indoor national team title in program history in March and finished runner-up to GVSU during the cross country season to round out their seven-point total.
GVSU, which claimed its second cross country title in a row and third in the past four years, was fourth during the indoor campaign, just three team points behind third-place Lincoln (Mo.), to complete its eight-point season.
The one point differential between the two is unmatched in Division II history. Only the 2011-12 Florida State men in Division I and the Division III UW-Oshkosh men of 2008-09 and women of 2009-10 have also recorded victories of one point.
Rounding out the top five for 2014 were Western State (24½ team points), Alaska Anchorage (34) and Minnesota Duluth (48½ points).
The Jerry Baltes Division II Women’s Program of the Year Award is named after current Grand Valley State coach Jerry Baltes. As of the 2014 season, Baltes’ squads have won seven NCAA titles. With a “triple crown” of NCAA crowns in the 2010-11 academic year, Baltes’ squad became the first in Division II history, regardless of gender to win cross country, indoor track & field, and outdoor track & field national championships in the same seasons.