NAIA Regional Award Winners for 2016 Outdoor Season

NEW ORLEANS – Regional Athletes and Coaches of the Year for the 2016 NAIA Outdoor Track & Field season were announced Monday by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA).

Each of the five regions honored both genders’ top track athletes and field athletes, and the top men’s and women’s head coaches and assistant coaches.

Award winners were determined by a vote of USTFCCCA member coaches. Only those individuals from USTFCCCA member programs are eligible for awards.

QUICK LINKS TO AWARDS

Men Women
Track Athletes of the Year Track Athletes of the Year
Field Athletes of the Year Field Athletes of the Year
Head Coaches of the Year Head Coaches of the Year
Assistant Coaches of the Year Assistant Coaches of the Year

 

Many of the honored athletes and coaches will be in competition at the NAIA Outdoor Track & Field Championships set for this weekend, May 26-28, in Gulf Shores, Alabama.

MEN’S TRACK ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

GREAT LAKES REGION — DESHAWN WOODS — INDIANA TECH

Woods, a junior from Norfolk, Virginia, is the NAIA leader in the 400 hurdles. He is also ranked No. 2 at 110 hurdles and is part of the second-ranked 4×200 relay team.

MIDWEST REGION — ROBERT IRONSHELL — BRIAR CLIFF (IOWA)

Ironshell, a junior from LeMars, Iowa, is ranked in the top-10 nationally of three individual events — 100 meters (sixth), 200 meters (9th), 400 meters (fifth). He is also part of the sixth-ranked 4×400 relay team in the NAIA. He has yet to lose at 400 meters this season.

SOUTH REGION — GEOFFREY KIPCHUMBA — WILLIAM CAREY (MISS.)

Kipchumba, who is a sophomore, is currently ranked No. 2 in the NAIA at 10000 meters (29:47.49). He is also ranked seventh nationally at 5000 meters (14:32.69).

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION — TRE HINDS — WAYLAND BAPTIST (TEXAS)

Hinds, a freshman from Ashton Hall, Barbados, is ranked sixth nationally at 800 meters (1:51.91) and seventh nationally at 400 meters (47.27). Also a member of the top-ranked 4×400 relay team and the sixth-ranked 4×800 team.

WEST REGION — SAMUEL ATKIN — LEWIS-CLARK STATE (IDAHO)

Atkin, a senior from Lincolnshire, England, had quite the senior season. Not only is he the only man in the NAIA to go sub-14 minutes in the 5000 (13:57) and sub-30 minutes in the 10000 (29.44), he also beat Edward Cheserek at the Oregon Twilight.

 

WOMEN’S TRACK ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

GREAT LAKES REGION — BRIANNA WOODS — INDIANA TECH

Woods, a junior from Huber Heights, Ohio, is ranked No. 2 in the nation at 100 meters, No. 2 at 200 meters and is a member of several top-ranked relay teams (4×100, 4×200) and the third-ranked 4×400 team.

MIDWEST REGION — JENNA MOODY — ST. FRANCIS (ILL.)

Moody, a sophomore from Plainfield, Illinois, is ranked fourth in the NAIA at 400 meters (54.99). She scored 30 points at the CCAC Conference meet and picked up three individual wins and two more in the relay events.

SOUTH REGION — ORENTHIA BENNETT — SOUTHERN-NEW ORLEANS (LA.)

Bennett, a junior from Treasure Beach, Jamaica, is the top-ranked athlete at 400 meters (54.16). She will look to win a title at the NAIA Championships coming up.

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION — NATALI ENGLE — FRIENDS (KAN.)

Engle, a sophomore from Wichita, Kansas, is ranked among the national leaders in three individual events and two relays. Her individual events include the 200 (No. 5), 100 (No. 7) and the 400 (No. 11). Those relay events are the 4×100 and 4×200. She’ll be competing in all five events at the NAIA Championships.

WEST REGION — TIANA THOMAS — COLLEGE OF IDAHO

Thomas, a senior from Middleton, Idaho, is the top-ranked woman in NAIA in the 400 hurdles (1:00.22) and is No. 5 at 100 hurdles (14.36). She scored 54.5 points at the conference championships.

 

MEN’S FIELD ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

GREAT LAKES REGION — ALAIN DIXON — INDIANA TECH

Dixon, a sophomore from Owsego, Illinois, is ranked first in the NAIA in the long jump (7.74m/25-4¾) and fifth in the NAIA in the triple jump (15.17m/49-9¼).

MIDWEST REGION — JACOB ARMBURST — OLIVET NAZARENE (ILL.)

Armbrust, a sophomore, is among the best in the NAIA in the discus throw and the shot put. In the former, he is ranked No. 1 with a heave of 58.27m (191-2). In the latter, he is ranked No. 2 after launching the sphere 17.83m (58-6).

SOUTH REGION — DEQUAN HARVIN — WEBBER INTERNATIONAL (FLA.)

Harvin, a sophomore from Orlando, Florida, is among the best in the region in the shot put and discus throw. The sophomore has personal best throws of 47.65m (156-4) in the discus and 13.99m (45-10¾) in the shot put.

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION — WAYNE NORTHOVER — WAYLAND BAPTIST (TEXAS)

Northover, a senior from Kingston, Jamaica, is ranked second in the NAIA in the triple jump (16.00m/52-6) and third in the long jump (7.56m/24-9 ¾). His leap in the triple jump is a school record.

WEST REGION — ERIC ENGLAND — EASTERN OREGON

England, a junior from Meridian, Idaho, leads the NAIA in the triple jump with a wind-aided leap of 16.36m (53-8¼) and is sixth in the long jump (7.39m/24-3). He is a two-time NAIA Athlete of the Week.

  

WOMEN’S FIELD ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

GREAT LAKES REGION — ERIN DROUILLARD — AQUINAS (MICH.)

Drouillard, a sophomore, is the second-ranked pole vaulter in the NAIA at 3.84m (12-7¼). She’ll look to improve on that and win a NAIA title this week.

MIDWEST REGION — LIZ KING — CONCORDIA (NEB.)

King, a senior from Billings, Montana, is currently ranked second in the hammer throw (56.00m/183-9) and third in the javelin (46.96m/154-1). Other than when she competed at the prestigious Drake Relays, King won the javelin throw at every meet this season.

SOUTH REGION — JONINA BRINSON — MOBILE (ALA.)

Brinson, a sophomore from Swainsboro, Georgia, is the top-ranked athlete in the NAIA in the long jump (5.96m/19-6¾) and ranked 14th in the triple jump (11.60m/38-0¾). 

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION — CHELSEA BAKER — FRIENDS (KAN.)

Baker, a sophomore from Pittsburg, Kansas, leads the South Central Region in the long jump (5.72m/18-9), is second in the high jump (1.73m/5-8) and fourth in the triple jump (11.75m/38-6). In the national rankings, she is ranked fifth in the high jump, sixth in the triple jump and seventh in the long jump.

WEST REGION — BECKY COLLIER – WESTMONT (CALIF.)

Collier, a junior from Riverside, California, currently leads the nation in the heptathlon with a score of 4682 points. She is also ranked No. 2 in the high jump (1.75m/5-8¾).

 

MEN’S COACH OF THE YEAR

GREAT LAKES REGION — DOUG EDGAR — INDIANA TECH

Edgar, in his seventh year leading Indiana Tech, has the No. 1 program in the nation according to the latest USTFCCCA team rankings. The WHAC champions will have a meet-best 31 entries at the NAIA championships, including nine in sprints/hurdles events and eight in jumping events.

MIDWEST REGION — KREGG EINSPAHR — CONCORDIA (NEB.)

Einspahr, in his final and 24th season as head coach at Concordia, guided the Bulldog men to a second-place GPAC outdoor finish behind six individual conference titles and 24 different all-conference athletes. The Concordia men will have 21 entries into the NAIA meet, tied for the second most on the board. In the pre-championship USTFCCCA national team rankings, the team sits third.

SOUTH REGION — ANDY CANEGITTA — MOBILE (ALA.)

Canegitta’s squad in only its second year of existence, captured the SSAC conference title. Canegitta was named the league’s Coach of the Year as his squad had 32 all-conference honorees, three conference records, and eight of 12 athlete of the week spots in the conference.

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION — RYAN PITTS — BAKER (KAN.)

Pitts, in his first year as the head coach at Baker, won the Heart of America Conference Coach of the Year honors. His squad scored 178½ points in the league meet for the title with three individual conference champions and 19 all-conference performers.  Baker finished the regular season as the top-ranked team in the South Central. The group will have seven entries at the NAIA meet.

WEST REGION — GRIER GATLIN — SOUTHERN OREGON

Gatlin’s men won the Cascade Conference Championship with a very balanced attack.  He has national qualifiers in sprints, jumps, middle distance, distance and throws for a total of 11 entries. The team finished with the No. 2 ranking in the region and is ranked No. 20 nationally.  Gatlin is in his fourth year at Southern Oregon.

 

WOMEN’S COACH OF THE YEAR

GREAT LAKES REGION — DOUG EDGAR — INDIANA TECH

Edgar’s Warriors are ranked No. 1 in the nation in the USTFCCCA pre-championship team rankings with 24 entries into the NAIA meet. They finished the season ranked No. 1 in the Great Lakes Regional Index. Edgar is in his seventh year with the school.

MIDWEST REGION — ED FYE — DOANE (NEB.)

Fye, in his 14th year at Doane leads a squad with 20 entries into the NAIA championships and is ranked fourth in the USTFCCCA’s pre-championships team rankings. Doane was the overwhelming No. 1 ranked team in the final regional rankings.

SOUTH REGION — ANDY CANEGITTA — MOBILE (ALA.)

Canegitta, second-year coach for Mobile, has three qualified for the NAIA meet and has the nation’s top-ranked long jumper, Jonina Brinson. Twelve athletes were named SSAC all-conference and the team broke conference records in the 200 meters and long jump.

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION — COLE DAVIS — FRIENDS (KAN.)

Davis, in his fifth year at Friends, won KCAC Coach of the Year honors after leading his team to a league record 297 points for the team title. Nine conference titles were won by his athletes with a top-four sweep of long jump spots and a 1-2-3 sweep of the 100 meter hurdles. With 14 entries into the NAIA championships, his team holds a No. 7 national ranking.

WEST REGION — SEAN HENNING – BIOLA (CALIF.)

Henning, in his first year at Biola, led the Eagles to the season’s GSAC title. His athletes claimed seven individual titles at the GSAC Championships as well as the 4×800 relay crown. The team finished the season as the No. 2 ranked team in the region, and, with 12 entries into the NAIA meet, they hold a No. 6 national pre-championships ranking.

 

MEN’S ASSISTANT COACH OF THE YEAR

GREAT LAKES REGION — AUSTIN ROARK — INDIANA TECH

Roark, the jumps coach for Indiana Tech, in his second season, has coached NAIA leaders in the high jump and long jump this year. In addition, Roark had conference champs in the high, long, and triple. Indiana Tech has the second-most entries into the NAIA championships in the jumping events with eight.

MIDWEST REGION — ED MCLAUGHLIN — CONCORDIA (NEB.)

McLaughlin, throws coach at Concordia in his 19th year, leads a pack of throwers that have a meet-best 14 entries into the NAIA meet. At this season’s GPAC outdoor meet, Bulldog men’s throwers won titles in the hammer throw and discus (Slechta). They went 1-2-4-6-7-8 in the hammer, 1-2-4-6 in the discus and 2-3-4-7 in the hammer while compiling 15 all-conference awards. Zach Lurz enters the national meet as the NAIA leader in the shot put.

SOUTH REGION — SAM ROBERTS — TENNESSEE WESLEYAN

Roberts, in his second year, oversees the sprints groups at Tennessee Wesleyan, leading Chaz Hawkins to NAIA qualifiers and top-12 performances in both hurdle events. Overall, the squad will have four entries in sprints/hurdles events to go along with a relay bid.

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION — REMURO HENRY – WAYLAND BAPTIST (TEXAS)

Henry, in his first year at Wayland Baptist coaching sprints, hurdles, and jumps, helped lead the squad to a No. 4 national ranking and No. 4 ranking in the South Central Region. He has a trio of 400 meter runners holding top 12 national seeds. His runners hold eight top-10 national marks which include the No. 1-ranked 4×400 relay team, the No. 2 400-meter hurdler and No. 4 100-meter runner in the NAIA.

WEST REGION — DAVID MORRIS — CARROLL (MONT.)

Morris, distance coach at Carroll in his fourth year, has the No. 3 and No. 4 1500 meter runners in NAIA competition this year. Lyla Pocha has a mark of 3:49.58 on the qualifying list, while David Thor has a mark of 3:50.08 on the qualifying list – both converted for altitude.

 

WOMEN’S ASSISTANT COACH OF THE YEAR

GREAT LAKES REGION — QUINN WHITE — TAYLOR (IND.)

White, in his sixth year as Taylor’s distance and javelin coach, has 10 athletes ranked in the top-eight regionally. Coached 10 to national qualifying marks while his athletes amassed 81 points at the conference meet, 54 percent of the team total.

MIDWEST REGION — ED MCLAUGHLIN — CONCORDIA (NEB.)

McLaughlin, in his 19th year as throws coach, leads a group that has a meet-best 17 throws entries into the NAIA championships. His crew combined for three GPAC titles (hammer, discus, shot put) and a total of 15 all-conference awards. They held down the top five spots in the hammer and also went 2-4-5-7 in the discus and 1-3-4 in the shot put at the conference meet. Bulldogs Stephanie Coley (discus) and Kali Robb (shot put) are current NAIA national leaders while Liz King ranks second in the hammer and third in the javelin. Concordia throwers own five of the top seven national marks in the women’s hammer.

SOUTH REGION — ALEX KLUCHKI — TENNESSEE WESLEYAN

Kluchki, in his first year as distance coach at TWC, has been instrumental in leading his team to a runner-up finish at the AAC Conference Championships. He has a national qualifier in the marathon who is currently ranked No. 6 in the nation for the half marathon. Five school records have been broken this year by his squad.

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION — REMURO HENRY – WAYLAND BAPTIST (TEXAS)

Henry helped lead the Wayland Baptist women to a No. 11 pre-championships national ranking. His squad has eight entries into the NAIA meet. Two of his athletes have been named NAIA Athletes of the week and two athletes named SAC Athletes of the Week two times or more this season. Henry is in his first year as sprints, hurdles, and jumps coach at the school.

WEST REGION — ANTHONY PIZZO – BIOLA (CALIF.)

Pizzo guided the Eagles to this season’s GSAC title as they had 119 of their points from events that were 800 meters or more in length. Biola had five runners score in the 1500  and 5000 at the league meet with conference crowns in the 800 as well as the 1500. Biola qualified 10 in middle-distance and distance events for the NAIA meet. Pizzo is in his first year as distance coach at the school.