Award History
NAIA XC Regional Awards

2022 NAIA Cross Country Regional Awards

NEW ORLEANS – Regional Athletes and Coaches of the Year for the 2022 NAIA Cross Country season were announced on Wednesday by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) following the conclusion of the regular season.

Many of these athletes and coaches will end their season on Friday, November 18, at the 2022 NAIA Cross Country Championships in Tallahassee, Florida. The meet will be held at Apalachee Regional Park.

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

Men’s Athlete of the Year

GREAT LAKES REGION — Eli Fullerton — Indiana Wesleyan

Fullerton, who hails from Belpre, Ohio, won the individual title at the Crossroads League Cross Country Championships in 25:12.6. He also posted top-10 finishes at both the IWU Twilight Invitational (third) as well as the Roy Griak Invitational (seventh).

MIDWEST REGION — Taylor Vallangeon — Olivet Nazarene (Ill.)

Vallangeon, who hails from Columbus, Ohio, won the individual title at the Chicagoland Cross Country Championships in 25:06.5. He also posted victories at the Lewis Early Bird, the Tiger Cross Country Invitational and the Bethel University XC Invitational.

SOUTH REGION — Jason Bowers — Cumberland (Tenn.)

Bowers, who hails from Parys, South Africa, won the individual title at the Mid-South Cross Country Championships in 25:02.3. He also captured top individual honors at six other meets this year with his only non-victory coming at the stacked North Alabama Showcase.

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION — Logan Horning — Friends (Kan.)

Horning, who hails from Ormond Beach, Florida, won the individual title at the KCAC Cross Country Championships in 24:45.1. He also posted top-15 finishes at several other meets this season, including the NAIA Mid-States Classic (runner-up) and the Louisville Classic (14th).

WEST REGION — Senzo Sokhela — Westmont (Calif.)

Sokhela, who hails from Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, won the individual title at the GSAC Cross Country Championships in 23:45.5. He also posted top-5 finishes this season at both the Cougar Challenge (third) and the John Elders Titan Invitational (third).

Men’s Coach of the Year

GREAT LAKES REGION — John Foss — Indiana Wesleyan

Foss, in his 35th year as head coach at Indiana Wesleyan, led the Wildcats to the team title at the Crossroads League Cross Country Championships with 40 points. Indiana Wesleyan also won team titles at the NAIA Great Lakes Challenge, Bethel Invitational and Indiana Wesleyan Twilight Classic.

MIDWEST REGION — Nate Wolf — Dordt (Iowa)

Wolf, in his eighth year as head coach at Dordt (Iowa), led the Defenders to the team title at the GPAC Cross Country Championships with 17 points. Dordt also won team titles at the Mount Marty Invitational and Defender Holiday Inn Express Classic.

SOUTH REGION — Chris Layne — Milligan (Tenn.)

Layne, in his 24th year as head coach at Milligan (Tenn.), led the Buffaloes to the team title at the Appalachian Conference Cross Country Championships with 20 points. Milligan also won team titles at the NAIA Appalachian Challenge, Eli Cramer Invitational and Queen City Invite.

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION — Alstin Benton — Saint Mary (Kan.)

Benton, in his 10th year as head coach at Saint Mary (Kan.), led the Spires to the team title at the KCAC Cross Country Championships with 20 points. Saint Mary also won team titles at the NAIA Great Lakes Challenge and Firestarter Classic.

WEST REGION — Zach Schroeder — The Master’s (Calif.)

Schroeder, in his 15th year as head coach at The Master’s (Calif.), led the Mustangs to the team title at the GSAC Cross Country Championships with 24 points. The Master’s also won the team title at the Florida State Invitational.

Women’s Athlete of the Year

GREAT LAKES REGION — Addy Wiley — Huntington (Ind.)

Wiley, who hails from Huntington, Indiana, won the individual title at the Crossroads League Cross Country Championships in 17:26.3. She is undefeated this season with first-place finishes at both the Louisville Classic and the NAIA Great Lakes Challenge.

MIDWEST REGION — Jessica Kampman — Dordt (Iowa)

Kampman, who hails from Abbotsford, British Columbia, won the individual title at the GPAC Cross Country Championships in 18:10.8. She hasn’t finished outside of the top-2 at any of the four meets in which she competed this season.

SOUTH REGION — Lina May — William Carey (Miss.)

May, who hails from Vancleave, Mississippi, won the individual title at the Southern States Cross Country Championships in 16:48.8. She also took top individual honors at the NAIA Appalachian Challenge in mid-October with her 17:08.3 winner.

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION — Riley Hiebert — Saint Mary (Kan.)

Hiebert, who hails from Eudora, Kansas, won the individual title at the KCAC Cross Country Championships in 17:43.7. She also took top individual honors at the Firestarter Classic and had top-5 finishes at several other meets this season, namely the Gans Creek Challenge (third) and the NAIA Great Lakes Challenge (fourth).

WEST REGION — Sydney Little Light — Rocky Mountain (Mont.)

Little Light, who hails from Crow Agency, Montana, won the individual title at the Frontier League Cross Country Championships in 18:11.5. She also took top individual honors at three other meets this season and finished third at the NAIA Great Lakes Challenge.

Women’s Coach of the Year

GREAT LAKES REGION — Quinn White — Taylor (Ind.)

White, in his 13th year as head coach at Taylor (Ind.), led the Trojans to the team title at the Crossroads League Championships with 24 points. Taylor also won team titles at the NAIA Great Lakes Challenge, Live in Lou Classic, Ray Bullock Invitational and Indiana Wesleyan Twilight Classic.

MIDWEST REGION — Jeff Barker — St. Francis (Ill.)

Barker, in his 11th year as head coach at St. Francis (Ill.), led the Fighting Saints to the team title at the Chicagoland Cross Country Championships with 20 points. St. Francis also finished fourth at the NAIA Great Lakes Challenge.

SOUTH REGION — Chris Layne — Milligan (Tenn.)

Layne, in his 24th year as head coach at Milligan (Tenn.), led the Buffaloes to the team title at the Appalachian Cross Country Championships with 21 points. Milligan also won team titles at the NAIA Appalachian Challenge, Royals Challenge, Eli Cramer Invitational and Queen City Invite.

SOUTH CENTRAL REGION — Alstin Benton — Saint Mary (Kan.)

Benton, in his 10th year as head coach at Saint Mary (Kan.), led the Spires to the team title at the KCAC Cross Country Championships with 20 points. Saint Mary also won team titles at the Firestarter Classic and Gans Creek Classic.

WEST REGION — Zach Schroeder — The Master’s (Calif.)

Schroeder, in his 15th year as head coach at The Master’s (Calif.), led the Mustangs to the team title at the GSAC Cross Country Championships with 18 points. The Master’s also finished second at the John Elders Titan Invitational and Vanguard Invitational.