Martin, Petersen & Janvrin, Vicars, and Lynn Named Division II Indoor National Coaches of the Year
NEW ORLEANS – Coaches from the top two men’s and women’s teams from the NCAA Division II indoor track & field championships were recognized as the national Head and Assistant Coaches of the Year on Wednesday. Damon Martin of Adams State was recognized as the Men’s Coach of the Year after the Grizzlies won the national title with 45 points, and Central Missouri co-heads Kip Janvrin and Kirk Pedersen won the same honor for women after their team posted 47 points and a win last weekend.
Findlay tied Grand Valley State for second in the men’s meet, and more than half of their points came from athletes coached by men’s Assistant Coach of the Year Derrick Vicars. Similarly, the Hillsdale women were second and nearly all of their points came from distance runners under women’s Assistant Coach of the Year Joe Lynn.
The winners of the coaching awards were selected based on a vote of the coaching body.
Martin is the director of track and cross country at Adams State, where he initially took over as the head women’s cross country and track & field coach in 1989. He had led the Grizzly men and women to thirty national titles, though only one was in men’s indoor track & field. He’s now doubled that total. The Adams State men won cross country nationals under Martin’s direction this fall, and it was his distance runners who helped deliver this title. Oliver Aitchison and Matt Daniels went 1-2 in the mile, Kevin Batt won the 3k, and Aitchison, Batt, Derek Brown, and Austin Anaya teamed up to win the DMR. The only non-distance scorer for Adams was shot put fifth-placer Zach Baxter.
That shot put was dominated by the Findlay men, coached by Derrick Vicars, who only finished his undergraduate throwing career in 2013. His throwing corps had three men score in the shot put—led by Taylor Miller’s runner-up finish—and Justin Welch win the weight throw. As an independent team, his throwers’ 22 points would have been the twelfth-place squad at nationals; for Findlay, they helped the Oilers tie for second place.
Welch’s performances were particularly elite this winter. His 22.15 meters mark in the weight throw would have ranked in the top ten in Division I.
Pedersen and Janvrin have a long and fruitful history together. Janvrin was a freshman when Pedersen was a senior on the Simpson college track team; that year, Pedersen won DIII indoor nationals in the 800. The next three years, Janvrin was the national champion in the decathlon.
Since 1997, the duo have been the co-head coaches at Central Missouri and led teams to dozens of conference championships. This is UCM’s first team title in the Pedersen-Janvrin administration, though. The Jennies did it thanks to high jump and triple jump national titles from Erika Kinsey, a weight throw runner-up finish from the aptly named Heavin Warner, a pentathlon third place from Madison Smith, and a smattering of single-digit points from Kinsey in the long jump, Smith in the high jump, and Brittany Kallenberger in the pole vault.
While the Jennies did it all in the field, the Hillsdale Chargers did it all on the track. Joe Lynn’s women went 1-2 in the 3k, took second in the 5k, and won the DMR. Emily Oren won the 3k and anchored the winning DM, and Kristina Galat delivered the double runner-up finishes in the five and three.