NAIA National Award Winners For 2018 Indoor Season
NEW ORLEANS – National Athletes and Coaches of the Year for the 2018 NAIA Indoor Track & Field season were announced Wednesday by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA).
These awards were voted on by USTFCCCA member coaches based on performances both at this past weekend’s NAIA Indoor Track & Field Championships and throughout the regular season.
Information on each of the winners can be found below.
NATIONAL ATHLETES OF THE YEAR
Men’s Track – Quintaveon Poole, Wayland Baptist (Texas)
Poole, a junior from Tennille, Georgia, stood out in a big way at the NAIA Indoor Track & Field Championships. He captured individual titles in both the 200 and 400, and then ran the opening leg of the runner-up 4×400 relay. It was in the 400 where Poole clocked a time of 46.21, which set a championship record. Poole entered the meet with the top time nationally in the 400 and the seventh best mark in the 200.
Women’s Track – Anna Shields, Point Park (Pa.)
Shields, a junior from Torrington, Connecticut, scored 20 points at the NAIA Indoor Track & Field Championships as she won the 1000 and the mile. During the regular season, Shields notched national-leading marks in the 600, 800, 1000 and mile to go along with a leg of the fifth-ranked distance medley relay. Shields put on a clinic at the River State Conference Championships when she scored a staggering 32.5 points.
Men’s Field – Alex Wellington, Hastings (Neb.)
Wellington, a senior from Tucson, Arizona, scored 18 points at the NAIA Indoor Track & Field Championships as he won the shot put and was runner-up in the weight throw. The senior was the top-ranked male in the shot put all season long and proved his mettle in Pittsburg, Kansas when he heaved the orb 18.38m (60-3¾). Wellington was named NAIA National Indoor Field Athlete of the Week in Week 5 of the season.
Women’s Field – Chelsea Baker, Friends (Kan.)
Baker, a senior from Pittsburg, Kansas, showed off in front of her hometown crowd at the NAIA Indoor Track & Field Championships. She won the pentathlon with a total score of 3854 points and added a runner-up finish in the high jump at 1.74m (5-8½). During the conference meet, Baker won the high jump, long jump and triple jump and set conference records in both the high jump and long jump.
NATIONAL COACHES OF THE YEAR
Men’s Coach – Brian Whitlock, Wayland Baptist (Texas)
Whitlock, in his 14th year at Wayland Baptist (Texas), led his men to the team title this past weekend at the NAIA Indoor Track & Field Championships. The Pioneers scored 88 points and beat Indiana Tech by eight points. This was WBU’s first team title since 2012 and its eighth in program history. During the season WBU set school records in the 400 meters, 600 meters, 600 yards, 800 meters and 4×400.
Women’s Coach – Brian Whitlock, Wayland Baptist (Texas)
Whitlock, in his 14th year at Wayland Baptist (Texas), led his women to the team title this past weekend at the NAIA Indoor Track & Field Championships. The Pioneers scored 100 points to beat runner-up Indiana Tech handily. This was WBU’s second team title in the past three years and its seventh in program history. The Pioneers won six event titles in Pittsburg, Kansas.
Men’s Assistant Coach – Zac Osgood, Hastings (Neb.)
Osgood, in his 15th year at Hastings (Neb.), saw his athletes account for five entries to the NAIA Indoor Track & Field Championships this past weekend. His prized pupil, Alex Wellington, scored 18 points by himself as he won the shot put and placed second in the weight throw. Grant Wickham, another of Osgood’s charges, ended up fifth in the weight throw.
Women’s Assistant Coach – Austin Roark, Indiana Tech
Roark, in his fourth year at Indiana Tech, helped his jumpers to the No. 1 ranking in the Event Squad Rankings in both the long jump and triple jump. Entering the NAIA Indoor Track & Field Championships, six of his long jumpers were in the top-15 of the Descending Order List, as were two of his high jumpers and one triple jumper. The Warriors won the event title in the high jump this past weekend and placed 2-3-4 in the long jump.