NCAA & NJCAA ITF National Athletes of the Week (January 23)
NEW ORLEANS – Collegians took aim at all of the records this past weekend.
They weren’t content with puting their name on the all-time best lists.
They wanted collegiate indoor records.
They wanted American indoor records.
They wanted all-time world bests.
Here are those eight athletes who made waves and were named National Athletes of the Week by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) on Tuesday.
- NCAA Division I Men – Grant Holloway, Florida
- NCAA Division I Women – Keturah Orji, Georgia
- NCAA Division II Men – Myles Pringle, Ashland
- NCAA Division II Women – Ashlea Maddex, Cal State Los Angeles
- NCAA Division III Men – Jordan Johnson, Benedictine (Ill.)
- NCAA Division III Women – Wadeline Jonathas, UMass Boston
- NJCAA Division I Men – Terence Ware, Barton County CC
- NJCAA Division I Women – Adva Cohen, Iowa Central CC
Find out more about these athletes by clicking their names or scrolling below.
National Athlete of the Week is an award selected and presented by the USTFCCCA Communications Staff at the beginning of each week to eight collegiate indoor track & field athletes (male and female for each of the three NCAA divisions and NJCAA Division I).
Nominations are open to the public. Coaches and sports information directors are encouraged to nominate their student-athletes; as are student-athletes, their families and friends, and fans of their programs. Nominated athletes are noticed before those athletes found through searching TFRRS.
The award seeks to highlight not only the very best times, marks and scores on a week-to-week basis, but also performances that were significant on the national landscape and/or the latest in a series of strong outings. Quality of competition, suspenseful finishes and other factors will also play a role in the decision.
Sophomore | Hurdles/Jumps
Grant Holloway had himself a day this past weekend at the Clemson Invitational.
Holloway kicked things off in the 60 hurdles, where he blistered the track with the third fastest mark in collegiate history. He crossed the finish line in 7.49, tying him with three other men at that time, including collegiate indoor record holder Omar McLeod.
Later, Holloway joined forces with three of his teammates in the 4×400. The Florida quartet got the baton around in 3:03.49, notching the eighth fastest time in collegiate indoor history (Holloway split 45.86). The Gators won that race by nearly five seconds over Clemson.
Careful consideration was also given to UTEP’s Michael Saruni, who set an all-time world best in the 600 meters.
Senior | Horizontal Jumps
Mount Olive, New Jersey
If you read this past week’s Feature Friday, you would have known Keturah Orji said she was feeling good about her 2018 season.
Well, if you didn’t believe her then, you’ll certainly believe her now.
This past weekend at the Clemson Invitational, Orji obliterated her American and collegiate indoor triple jump record. Orji bounded 14.53m (47-8), which bested her own previous standard by nine inches. It also matched her outdoor record set two years ago at the 2016 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships.
Junior | Sprints/Hurdles
Myles Pringle was up to his old tricks once again, dominating the scene in NCAA Division II.
The native of Cincinnati, Ohio, was all over the top-three at the Youngstown State Collegiate Invitational this past weekend, winning the 200 meters with an NCAA Division II leading time of 21.46. Pringle also took home the high jump event title with a mark of 2.06m (6-9).
Pringle also notched a runner-up time of 6.92 in the 60 meters after running a 6.96 qualifying time – just one one-hundredth of a second behind NCAA Division I All-American Chad Zallow of Youngstown St.
Pringle was also helped Ashland finish second in the 4×400 relay that wrapped up with a time of 3:14.22, good for fourth on the NCAA Division II Descending Order List.
Freshman | Sprints/Hurdles
Ashlea Maddex had a pretty solid collegiate debut.
The rookie sprinter/hurdler posted an NCAA Division II Automatic Qualifying Time of 8.40 in the 60 hurdles at the Boise State Bronco Invite, tying for the top mark in NCAA Division II on the season while defeating a stable of NCAA Division I athletes From Sacramento State, Portland State and Utah.
Maddex also ran a 7.95 in the 60 meters and helped guide the Golden Eagles to a fourth-place finish in the 4×400 relay with a time of 4:01.52.
Junior | Sprints
Jordan Johnson inched closer to the NCAA DIII record book this past weekend.
Johnson won the 60-meter final at the NAIA vs NCAA Challenge with a time of 6.80. That smashed his previous PR by eight one-hundredths of a second and left him five one-hundredths of a second from the all-time top-10 (6.75).
Later in the meet, Johnson also added a victory in the 200.
Sophomore | Sprints
Wadeline Jonathas wrote her name all over the NCAA DIII record book last year during the outdoor season. Now she has turned her attention to the indoor version.
Jonathas flew around the track this past weekend at the Maroon & White Classic hosted by Springfield College and clocked a time of 24.69 in the 200. Converted for track size, that time would be 24.32, which would put her second on the all-time top-10 behind Amber Celen, who set the record of 24.15 last year at the NCAA Division III Indoor Track & Field Championships.
The sophomore now put some distance between herself and the rest of the women on the 60 and 200-meter Descending Order Lists.
Sophomore | Sprints
Only two men were faster than Terence Ware in the 60 meters this past weekend: Andre Ewers of Florida State and Tre James of Southern Utah.
Ware, a product out of Lakewood, Florida, turned on the afterburners at the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Collegiate Invitational, posting a blistering time of 6.63 (6.65 altitude conversion) to hit an NJCAA Automatic Qualifying Mark. Ware’s time sits second on the NJCAA Descending Order List, and was tied for third-fastest mark on the week in the event across the nation.
Ware bested NCAA Division I athletes from Southern California, Grand Canyon and North Texas during the competition.
Freshman | Distance
Get used to seeing Adva Cohen’s name here. She’s something special.
Cohen ran a 16:43.76 in the 5000 meters at the SDSU DII Invitational, topping the NJCAA Descending Order List and hitting an NJCAA Automatic Qualifying Mark. Cohen finished over a minute ahead of her nearest competitor, and her time was the best in the nation in the event on the week.
Additionally, Cohen posted the top time in NJCAA on the year in the mile, running a 4:49.57 at the Jim Emmerich Alumni Invite a day after her 5000 meter performance. Cohen hit an NJCAA Automatic Qualifying Mark in that event, as well, and took home the event title over a slew of NCAA Division I athletes.