Wintheiser, Regan, Carius & Van Allen Earn National Awards for Division III Cross Country
Award History
NCAA DIII XC National Awards

Wintheiser, Regan, Carius & Van Allen Earn National Awards for Division III Cross Country

NEW ORLEANS – The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) announced Tuesday its National Athletes and Coaches of the Year for the NCAA Division III Cross Country season following the championships in Mason, Ohio, this past weekend.

NCAA Division III Cross Country individual champions Grant Wintheiser of St. Olaf and Amy Regan of Stevens Institute were named the men’s and women’s USTFCCCA National Athletes of the Year, respectively.

Al Carius of North Central (Ill.) and Bobby Van Allen of Johns Hopkins earned men’s and women’s National Coach of the Year honors, respectively, in leading their teams to national titles.

Men’s National Athlete of the Year

Courtesy: St. Olaf

Grant Wintheiser, St. Olaf

Recent Winners
2013: Mike LeDuc, Connecticut College
2012: Tim Nelson, UW-Stout
2011: Ben Sathre, St. Thomas (Minn.)
2010: Anders Hulleberg, Haverford
2009: Ricky Flynn, Lynchburg
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Since taking 80th at the 2011 NCAA meet, Wintheiser has finished first, second, or third in every single cross country race he’s started.  After taking third at the last two national meets, Wintheiser finally won his first individual national title on Saturday, beating Williams’s Colin Cotton by six seconds.

The senior from Sartell, Minnesota, is one of the most accomplished cross country runners in Division III history. He is the third runner after Widener’s Macharia Yuot and North Central’s John Weigel to finish in the top three at nationals three times.

No Division III runner beat Wintheiser this year. He won invitationals at home and Wisconsin-Eau Claire in addition to MIAC and Central Region titles.  Wintheiser has won the last three MIAC championships and two of the last three Central Region meets. With his winning time of 23:44 on the Kings Island Course, he became the first runner from St. Olaf to win a cross country national championship.


Women’s National Athlete of the Year

Courtesy: Stevens

Amy Regan, Stevens

Recent Winners
2013: Chelsea Johnson, St. Scholastica
2012: Christy Cazzola, UW-Oshkosh
2011: Chiara Del Piccolo, Williams
2010: Wendy Pavlus, St. Lawrence
2009: Wendy Pavlus, St. Lawrence
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With her epic victory on Saturday, Amy Regan completed an undefeated junior season.  Not only is she the first Stevens Institute Duck to win a national title, she’s the first runner ever from a college in the state of New Jersey to win a men’s or women’s NCAA Division I, II, or III cross country national championship.

Regan did so in daring but tactically sound fashion.  She opened up an enormous lead on the muddy course, consistently keeping a 10-15 second buffer between herself and the pack chasing her for the first half of the race.  Eventually, Lucy Cheadle of Washington (Mo.) caught her, and the two ran side-by-side before Regan threw in a perfectly timed burst on the race’s final hill. She gapped Cheadle by six seconds and  ran 20:51 for the win.

It was the closest race of the year for the junior.  She handily won the Atlantic Region and Empire 8 conference, and dominated invites at Lehigh, Haverford, Connecticut College, and Vassar.


Men’s National Coach of the Year

Courtesy: North Central (Ill.)

Recent Winners
2013: Phil Lundin, St. Olaf
2012: Al Carius, North Central (Ill.)
2011: Al Carius, North Central (Ill.)
2010: Tom Donnelly, Haverford
2009: Al Carius, North Central (Ill.)
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Al Carius, North Central (Ill.)

There have been 42 NCAA Division III men’s cross country championship meets.  North Central teams coached by Al Carius have been first or second in 31 of them.  This was the 16th national title for Carius, and the third in four years. 

It was a particularly sweet win for the coach and his team, as they beat St. Olaf by 13 points after losing to the Oles by two points last year.  Travis Morrison (7th) and Aron Sebhat (12th) were All-American for the Cardinals, and Zach Plank, Troy Kelleher, and Ryan Root went 44-46-58 to clinch title #16.

USTFCCCA award archives only date to 1993; in those 22 seasons, Carius has been named the Coach of the Year nine times.

In addition to their dominant national performances, North Central has won 41 straight Collegiate Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin (CCIW) titles under Carius. Earlier this fall, the Cardinals won Pre-Nationals and the UW-Oshkosh AAE Invitational. This national championship completes Carius’s 49th season at the helm.



Women’s National Coach of the Year

Courtesy: Johns Hopkins

Recent Winners
2013: Bobby Van Allen, Johns Hopkins
2012: Bobby Van Allen, Johns Hopkins
2011: Jeff Stiles, Washington (Mo.)
2010: Terry Aldrich, Middlebury
2009: Dan Schwamberger, UW-Eau Claire
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Bobby Van Allen, Johns Hopkins

Bobby Van Allen and Jack Daniels are now the only two people who have coached Division III women’s teams to three straight national championships.  In his sixteenth season as the head coach at Johns Hopkins, Van Allen has now been named National Coach of the Year three times.

The Blue Jays’ title teams in 2012 and 2013 each had three All-Americans; this year’s team outdid those squads with four.  Sophia Meehan finished seventh, Ashley Murphy 15th, Tess Meehan 24th, and Fran Loeb 29th for A-A honors.  Bridget Gottlieb closed out the scoring in 37th and missed being All-American by a second and a half.

This championship makes Hopkins one of just five programs with three or more titles. Van Allen’s team made its first national appearance in 2007 and won its first Centennial Conference championship in 2008. They haven’t missed nationals or lost conferences since.