Division I XC Regional Athletes and Coaches of the Year Announced for 2014 Season

Courtesy: Tom Lewis & Dennis Young, USTFCCCA

November 18, 2014   

NEW ORLEANS – Region Athletes and Coaches of the Year for the 2014 NCAA Division I cross country season were announced Tuesday by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA), as voted on by the Division’s coaches.

More information on each of the winners can be found below.

QUICK LINKS
MEN: Region Athletes of the Year | Region Coaches of the Year
WOMEN: Region Athletes of the Year | Region Coaches of the Year

Award History: Athlete | Coach

The NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships will be contested November 22 in Terre Haute, Indiana, hosted by Indiana State at the LaVern Gibson Championship Cross Country Course. The meet will be broadcast live online on NCAA.com.

Men’s Athletes of the Year

GREAT LAKES REGION – John Mascari, Indiana State

Year
Past Winner
2013 John Mascari, Indiana State
2012
Mohammed Ahmed, Wisconsin
2011
Callum Hawkins, Butler
2010
Eric Finan, Cincinnati
2009
Jeff See, Ohio State

Mascari defended his regional crown, knocking off Big Ten champ Malachy Schrobilgen by 3 seconds on Schrobilgen’s home course.  With the win, Mascari advances to compete on his own home course in Terre Haute at nationals next week.  He won his second straight regional title after losing to Erik Peterson of Butler and Mason Ferlic of Michigan earlier this fall. Mascari is a redshirt junior from Terre Haute, Ind.

 

MID-ATLANTIC REGION – Matt Fischer, Penn State

Year
Past Winner
2013 Patrick Tiernan, Villanova
2012
Travis Mahoney, Temple
2011
Donn Cabral, Princeton
2010
Ayalew Taye, Georgetown
2009
Andrew Bumbalough, Georgetwon

According to TFRRS, this is only the second win of Fischer’s college career, and by far the biggest one.  He easily defeated Villanova’s Pat Tiernan, finishing four seconds ahead. Next week will be Fischer’s second NCAA championship; he was 78th in Terre Haute last year. Fischer is a senior from Kennett Square, Pa.

 

MIDWEST REGION – Kirubel Erassa, Oklahoma State

Year
Past Winner
2013
Chris O’Hare, Tulsa
2012
Chris O’Hare, Tulsa
2011
Hassan Mead, Minnesota
2010
Colby Lowe, Oklahoma State
2009
Hassan Mead, Minnesota

Erassa, a senior from Grayson, Ga., won an extremely tight race on Friday.  Two-and-a-half seconds separated the top four places, with Erassa narrowly defeating Tulsa’s Marc Scott by eight tenths of a second. The Cowboy hasn’t lost a race this fall, going 3-for-3 thus far.

 

MOUNTAIN REGION – Anthony Rotich, UTEP

Year
Past Winner
2013
Kennedy Kithuka, Texas Tech
2012
Kennedy Kithuka, Texas Tech
2011
Miles Batty, BYU
2010
David McNeill, Northern Arizona
2009
David McNeill, Northern Arizona

After finishing second to superstar Kennedy Kithuka the last two years, Anthony Rotich picked up his first Mountain title on Friday afternoon.  He also won the Conference USA meet two weeks ago.  Rotich is a senior from Nairobi, Kenya.

 

NORTHEAST REGION – Jake Byrne, Iona

Year
Past Winner
2013 Maksim Korolev, Harvard
2012
Mitch Goose, Iona
2011
Leonard Korir, Iona
2010
Leonard Korir, Iona
2009
Ryan Sheridan, Iona

The top four runners in the Northeast Region all hail from the British Isles, with Byrne, an Irishman from Iona, coming out on top. He beat Providence’s Benjamin Connor by three seconds.  Byrne also won the MAAC title earlier in November.

 

SOUTH REGION – Ty McCormack, Auburn

Year
Past Winner
2013 Mark Parrish, Florida
2012
Jakub Zivec, Florida State
2011
David Forrester, Florida State
2010
Ciaran O’Lionaird, Florida State
2009
Felix Kibioywo, Auburn

McCormack, a senior from Gainesville, Ga., won the regional by nine seconds. Also this season, McCormack was runner-up at the SEC Championships and winner of the Alabama Crimson Classic and Virginia’s Panorama Farms Invitational.

 

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION – Stanley Kebenei, Arkansas

Year
Past Winner
2013 Kemoy Campbell, Arkansas
2012
Henry Lelei, Texas A&M
2011
Henry Lelei, Texas A&M
2010
Festus Kigen, TCU 
2009
Dorian Ulrey, Arkansas

At home, Kebenei easily defended his South Central title against Texas’s Craig Lutz.  Kebenei has only lost once since late September, a sixth-place finish at the Wisconsin adidas Invitational.  He’s also the SEC champion. Kebenei, a senior, hails from Fayetteville, Ark.

 

SOUTHEAST REGION – Luis Vargas, Elon

Year
Past Winner
2013 Paul Chelimo, UNC-Greensboro
2012
Soufiane Bouchikhi, Eastern Kentucky
2011
Ryan Hill, NC State
2010
Sam Chelanga, Liberty
2009
Sam Chelanga, Liberty

Also the CAA champion, Vargas hasn’t lost a race this fall. Relegated to ‘B’ races at Notre Dame and Pre-Nationals, Vargas ran fast enough at both meets to contend in the ‘A’ section.  The senior from Angier, N.C., beat Louisville’s Edwin Kibichiy by eight seconds to win the Southeast.

 

WEST REGION – Maksim Korolev, Stanford

Year
Past Winner
2013

Edward Cheserek, Oregon

2012
Lawi Lalang, Arizona
2011
Lawi Lalang, Arizona
2010
Trevor Dunbar, Portland
2009
Chris Derrick, Stanford

Korolev outkicked Oregon’s Edward Cheserek to give the Duck his first cross country loss in over a year.  Paired with his victory at Wisconsin, that’s Korolev’s second win of the season.  He’s from Harrisonville, Mo., and a graduate transfer from Harvard; he won the Northeast Region in a Harvard uniform a year ago.

 

Men’s Coaches of the Year

GREAT LAKES REGION – Mick Byrne, Wisconsin

Year
Past Winner
2013 Alex Gibby, Michigan
2012
Mick Byrne, Wisconsin
2011
Mick Byrne, Wisconsin
2010
Mick Byrne, Wisconsin
2009
John McNichols, Indiana State

Coached by Mick Byrne in his seventh year with the Badgers, No. 6 Wisconsin returned to the top of the regional ranks with a 61-82 triumph over nearest challenger Michigan State. The Big Ten Champions also won the Greater Louisville Classic and finished third this fall at its adidas Invitational.

 

MID-ATLANTIC REGION – Marcus O’Sullivan, Villanova

(Harry Groves Award)

Year
Past Winner
2013 Marcus O’Sullivan, Villanova
2012
Patrick Henner, Georgetown
2011
Patrick Henner, Georgetown
2010
Steve Dolan, Princeton
2009
Patrick Henner, Georgetown

Coached by Marcus O’Sullivan in his 15th year with program, the No. 5 Villanova Wildcats won the Mid-Atlantic for the second-straight year. Placing six runners in the race’s top 16, ‘Nova cruised to a 41-74 victory over nearest challenger Georgetown. The squad won the BIG EAST title this fall by a wide margin, sweeping the top three spots.

 

MIDWEST REGION – Dave Smith, Oklahoma State

(Roy Griak Award)

Year
Men
2013 Dave Smith, Oklahoma State
2012
Steve Gulley, Tulsa
2011
Dave Smith, Oklahoma State
2010
Martin Smith, Oklahoma
2009
Dave Smith, Oklahoma State

The No. 4 Cowboys, coached by ninth-year coach Dave Smith, took the Midwest crown for the fourth-straight season. Led by Kirubel Erassa, OSU placed three in the region race’s top 11 places to top nearest-challenger Tulsa, 63-77. Winners of the Big 12 Conference, the Cowboys placed six in the top 12 in the league race for the title.

 

MOUNTAIN REGION – Mark Wetmore, Colorado

(Chick Hislop Award)

Year
Men
2013 Eric Heins, Northern Arizona
2012
Eric Heins, Northern Arizona
2011
Ed Eyestone, BYU
2010
Joe Franklin, New Mexico
2009
Ed Eyestone, BYU

Coached by Mark Wetmore in his 20th year with the program, No. 1 Colorado returned to the top of the Mountain for the first time since 2008 with a 45-56 victory over runner-up and region host New Mexico. The Buffs swept places 4-5-6-7-8 for the Pac-12 title earlier in the fall and claimed first-place at the Pre-National Invitational by a wide margin.

 

NORTHEAST REGION – Chris Fox, Syracuse

Year
Past Winner
2013 Chris Fox, Syracuse
2012
Ricardo Santos, Iona
2011
Chris Fox, Syracuse
2010
Chris Fox, Syracuse
2009
Chris Fox, Syracuse

Coached by Chris Fox in his tenth year, the No. 2 Orange won their second-straight title and fourth in five years by sweeping spots 6-7-8-9 and taking the close battle over Providence, 45-48. Syracuse took the ACC crown by a commanding margin, 32-90, over NC State. Earlier in the fall, the Orange won the Wisconsin adidas Invitational and finished runner-up to Oregon at the Coast-to-Coast Battle in Beantown.

 

SOUTH REGION – Brian O’Neal, Mississippi

(Dave Walker Award)

Year
Men
2013 Pat Cuniff, Georgia
2012
Bob Braman, Florida State
2011
Bob Braman, Florida State
2010
Joe Walker, Alabama
2009
Joe Walker, Alabama

Led by Brian O’Neal in his third year at the helm, the No. 24 Rebels toppled the Seminoles, 52-94, for the regional crown to earn its first-ever national rank. Winning its first regional title in program history, Ole Miss improved from their ninth-place showing a year ago at the regional. Mississippi was second at the SEC Championships, eighth in the Pre-National Invitational, and second at the Greater Louisville Classic.

 

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION – Chris Bucknam, Arkansas

Year
Past Winner
2013 Chris Bucknam, Arkansas
2012
John Hayes, Texas
2011
John Hayes, Texas
2010
Chris Buchnam, Arkansas
2009
Chris Bucknam, Arkansas

Led by seventh-year coach Chris Bucknam, the No. 21 Razorbacks claimed the regional crown for the second-straight year. The squad’s top four runners placed in the top nine with Stanley Kebenei taking the individual title. Arkansas took the SEC crown and won their home Chile Pepper Invitational this fall.

 

SOUTHEAST REGION – Peter Watson, Virginia

Year
Men
2013 Rick Erdmann, Eastern Kentucky
2012
Rick Erdmann, Eastern Kentucky
2011
Rollie Geiger, NC State
2010
Stephen Walsh, William and Mary
2009
Alex Gibby, William and Mary

Led by third-year coach Peter Watson, the No. 13 Cavaliers took the region crown for the second time in three years with a, 75-79, victory over runner-up Furman. Virginia placed fourth in the ACC Championships and fourth in the Washington Invitational.

 

WEST REGION – Rob Conner, Portland

Year
Men
2013 Chris Miltenberg, Stanford
2012
Rob Conner, Portland
2011
Mark Conover, Cal Poly
2010
Jason Dunn, Stanford
2009
Jason Dunn, Stanford

Conner, in his 25th year at the helm, led No. 7 Portland to a runner-up showing in the region, marking its eighth top-three region finish in nine years. With senior Scott Fauble up front, the first four Pilots crossed the line in places 4-9-10-14. The squad won the West Coast Conference title ahead of BYU, 28-31. They also finished fourth at the Wisconsin adidas Invitational earlier in the year.

 

Women’s Athletes of the Year

GREAT LAKES REGION – Leah O’Connor, Michigan State

Year
Past Winner
2013
Juli Accurso, Ohio
2012
Juli Accurso, Ohio
2011
Danielle Tauro, Michigan
2010
Emily MacLeod, Michigan State
2009
Emily MacLeod, Michigan State

O’Connor, a redshirt senior from Croswell, Mich., crossed the line a hair ahead of her teammate Schulist to grab a regional crown to go with her Big Ten championship from two weeks ago.  This is the third time this season O’Connor and Schulist have gone 1-2 in a race this fall.  

 

MID-ATLANTIC REGION – Katrina Coogan, Georgetown

Year
Past Winner
2013 Emily Lipari, Villanova
2012
Nicky Akande, Villanova
2011
Sheila Reid, Villanova
2010
Sheila Reid, Villanova
2009
Sheila Reid, Villanova

Coogan dominated regionals after winning the BIG EAST in a similar rout two weeks ago.  The senior finished in the top five at the Battle in Beantown and Pre-Nationals earlier this fall. She’ll be joined by her full team–the Hoyas are ranked No. 2 in the nation–in Terre Haute.

 

MIDWEST REGION – Courtney Frerichs, UMKC

Year
Past Winner
2013 Crystal Nelson, Iowa State
2012
Betsy Saina, Iowa State
2011
Aliphine Tuliamuk, Wichita State
2010
Stephanie Price, Minnesota
2009
Angela Bizzarri, Illinois

Frerichs, a former National Athlete of the Week, won her third straight race and fourth in five tries this fall. She won the region crown by nine seconds and was the only one in the field under 20 minutes in the 6k race. The junior is a native of Nixa, Mo.

 

MOUNTAIN REGION – Alice Wright, New Mexico

Year
Past Winner
2013 Sammy Silva, New Mexico
2012
Risper Kimaiyo, UTEP
2011
Risper Kimaiyo, UTEP
2010
Risper Kimaiyo, UTEP
2009
Jenny Barringer, Colorado

In just the fourth race of her college career, Wright took home the Mountain Region title on her home course.  She was eighth at Notre Dame and 42nd at Wisconsin before taking fourth at the Mountain West meet.  Wright, a redshirt freshman, is from England.

 

NORTHEAST REGION – Kate Avery, Iona

Year
Past Winner
2013
Abbey D’Agostino, Dartmouth
2012
Abbey D’Agostino, Dartmouth
2011
Abbey D’Agostino, Dartmouth
2010
Lucy Van Dalen, Stony Brook
2009
Katie Hursey, Syracuse

Avery, a junior from England, dominated the field on Friday. Her teammate and fellow Brit, Rosie Clarke, was the closest runner a full 23 seconds behind.  Avery has only raced twice this fall, but is averaging about a minute margin of victory thus far.

 

SOUTH REGION – Colleen Quigley, Florida State

Year
Women
2013 Colleen Quigley, Florida State
2012
Violah Lagat, Florida State
2011
Amanda Winslow, Florida State
2010
Kristie Krueger, Georgia
2009
Rebecca Lowe, Florida

Quigley, a senior from St. Louis, Mo., won the South region for the second-straight year. For her third-straight top-two regional finish, she took the regional crown (19:17.0) by nearly 10 seconds ahead of nearest challenger Chelsea Blaase of Tennessee. Earlier this fall, she was runner-up at the ACC Championships and won titles at the Lehigh Paul Short Run and Virginia Tech Alumni Invitational.

 

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION – Dominique Scott, Arkansas

Year
Women
2013 Marielle Hall, Texas
2012
Marielle Hall, Texas
2011
Silje Fjortoft, SMU
2010
Nicole Mericle, Rice
2009
Silje Fjortoft, SMU

Scott, a junior from South Africa, obliterated the field on her Arkansas home course for her first South Central win.  She averaged five seconds a mile faster than anyone else in the field en route to the victory.  Wisconsin was her only loss of the season, as Scott won regional and conference titles in addition to the Chile Pepper Festival in October.

 

SOUTHEAST REGION – Annie Lehardy, North Carolina

Year
Women
2013 Emily Stites, William and Mary
2012
Cally Macumber, Kentucky
2011
Kendra Schaaf, North Carolina
2010
Laura Hoer, NC State
2009
Catherine White, Virginia

LeHardy, a senior from Roanoke, Va., took the Southeast Region title for the first cross country win of her college career.  She edged out William & Mary’s Carolyn Hennessey by a second.  The Tar Heel finished 37th at Wisconsin’s adidas Invitational and fourth at ACCs earlier this year.

 

WEST REGION – Shelby Houlihan, Arizona State

Year
Women
2013 Emma Bates, Boise State
2012
Jordan Hasay, Oregon
2011
Jordan Hasay, Oregon
2010
Jordan Hasay, Oregon
2009
Kendra Schaaf, Washington

The senior from Sioux City, Iowa, won her third race in four tries this fall.  In addition to being the West Region champion, Houlihan took home the win at Roy Griak and the Pac-12 meet. She beat defending regional champ Emma Bates by two and a half seconds on Saturday.

 

Women’s Coaches of the Year

GREAT LAKES REGION – Walt Drenth, Michigan State

Year
Past Winner
2013 Mike McGuire, Michigan
2012
Mike McGuire, Michigan
2011
Mike McGuire, Michigan
2010
Walt Drenth, Michigan State
2009
Tim Connelly, Notre Dame

Coached by Walt Drenth, in his 11th year at the helm, his team placed four in the top six in the regional to score a decisive victory over Wisconsin, 28-82. The No. 1-ranked Spartans are undefeated this year in major competitions with a Big Ten title and first-place showings at the Wisconsin adidas Invitational and the Roy Griak Invitational.

 

MID-ATLANTIC REGION – Michael Smith, Georgetown

Year
Past Winner
2013 Gina Procaccio, Villanova
2012
Beth Alford-Sullivan, Penn State
2011
Gina Procaccio, Villanova
2010
Gina Procaccio, Villanova
2009
Gina Procaccio, Villanova

Coached by third-year coach Michael Smith, the No. 2 Hoyas won a 38-42 decision over nearest challenger West Virginia for the region crown. Georgetown has finished first or second in the region for five-consecutive seasons. Along with being BIG EAST champs this fall, the Hoyas won the Pre-National Invitational and won the Lehigh Paul Short Run and was second at the Coast-to-Coast Battle in Beantown.

 

MIDWEST REGION – Andrea Grove-McDonough, Iowa State

Year
Past Winner
2013 Andrea Grove-McDonough, Iowa State
2012
Corey Ihmels, Iowa State
2011
Corey Ihmels, Iowa State
2010
Corey Ihmels, Iowa State
2009
Gary Wilson, Minnesota

Led by second-year coach Andrea Grove-McDonough, the No. 5 Cyclones claimed a fifth-straight region crown with a decisive victory over nearest challenger Minnesota, 66-125. Placing four in the top nine, ISU easily claimed the Big 12 title earlier this fall. In addition, the group placed third at the Wisconsin adidas Invitational and second at the Roy Griak Invitational. Iowa State enters the NCAA Championships No. 5 in the nation.

 

MOUNTAIN REGION – Mark Wetmore, Colorado

Year
Past Winner
2013 Mark Wetmore, Colorado
2012
Paul Pilkington, Weber State
2011
Joe Franklin, New Mexico
2010
Joe Franklin, New Mexico
2009
Mark Wetmore, Colorado

Wetmore’s No. 8-ranked Buffaloes took the region for the second-straight year, dispatching the field and nearest challenger New Mexico, 43-56, as the five from the squad all finished in the top 13. Colorado also placed third in the Pac-12 Championships and fourth in the Pre-National Invitational.

 

NORTHEAST REGION – Ricardo Santos, Iona

Year
Women
2013 Ray Treacy, Providence
2012
Andrea Grove-McDonough, Connecticut
2011
Chris Fox, Syracuse
2010
Andy Ronan, Stony Brook
2009
Chris Fox, Syracuse

Coached by Ricardo Santos in his seventh year with the program, Iona took the 1-2-6 spots in the regional to take top honors as a team, 91-128, over defending national champion Providence. The MAAC Champions, the Gaels finished sixth at Lehigh’s Paul Short Run earlier in the fall. Iona enters the NCAA meet as the No. 16 team in the country.

 

SOUTH REGION – Steve Keith, Vanderbilt

Year
Past Winner
2013 Karen Harvey, Florida State
2012
Karen Harvey, Florida State
2011
Steve Keith, Vanderbilt
2010
Karen Harvey, Florida State
2009
Todd Morgan, Florida

Coached by Steve Keith in his ninth year at the helm, No. 12-nationally-ranked Vanderbilt snapped Florida State’s four-year winning streak in the region, topping the Seminoles, 52-53, in placing five runners in the race’s top 14. The Commodores also placed runner-up in the SEC Championships this fall, tenth in the Wisconsin adidas Invitational, and eighth at the Roy Griak Invitational.

 

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION – Lance Harter, Arkansas

Year
Women
2013 Lance Harter, Arkansas
2012
Lance Harter, Arkansas
2011
Lance Harter, Arkansas
2010
Steve Sisson, Texas
2009
Cathy Casey, SMU

Coached by soon-to-be-inducted USTFCCCA Hall of Fame member Lance Harter, No. 4 Arkansas claimed its fourth-straight regional title. They placed four in the race’s top seven and junior Dominique Scott took individual top honors. The team won the SEC title by a wide margin, 32-85, over nearest challenger Vanderbilt. Arkansas was runner-up to Michigan State at the Wisconsin adidas Invitational.

 

SOUTHEAST REGION – Natalie Hall, William and Mary

Year
Women
2013 Todd Morgan, Virginia
2012
Kevin Jermyn, Duke
2011
Jason Vigilante, Virginia
2010
Jason Vigilante, Virginia
2009
Kevin Jermyn, Duke

William and Mary, led by first-year coach Natalie Hall, captured the region crown for the first time in program history in what will go down as a massive upset of the field. Entering the regional race unranked nationally, the Tribe toppled three nationally ranked teams including runner-up, then-No. 14 Virginia, 74-82, for the crown. The squad also won the CAA title this fall. The Tribe are No. 14-ranked nationally.

 

WEST REGION – Corey Ihmels, Boise State

Year
Women
2013 James Li, Arizona
2012
Robert Johnson, Oregon
2011
Greg Metcalf, Washington
2010
Greg Metcalf, Washington
2009
Greg Metcalf, Washington

Improving from 10th a year ago, No. 11 Boise State led by second-year coach Corey Ihmels, placed runner-up in the West. Led by senior Emma Bates’ second-place showing, the Broncos, who toppled four other nationally-ranked teams was just 15-points shy of Oregon for the title. Earlier in the fall, Boise State was second in the Mountain West and fourth at the Roy Griak Invitational.