Six Earn AA Honors At National Meet

Wittenberg junior Tyler Gittins (L) & Ohio Wesleyan freshman Cirrus Robinson (R)
Wittenberg junior Tyler Gittins (L) & Ohio Wesleyan freshman Cirrus Robinson (R)

The 2017 NCAA Division III Track & Field Championships concluded on Saturday (5/27) at SPIRE Institute in Geneva, Ohio. Following the three days of competition, six NCAC student-athletes earned All-American awards, highlighted by a pair of third-place finishes. 

Four of the six All-American trophies were collected by NCAC female student-athletes, led by Ohio Wesleyan freshman Cirrus Robinson (Ashland, OH/Ashland) finishing third in the high jump with a leap of 5’08.00”. Robinson is now a two-time All-American after winning the national title in the high jump at the indoor nationals. Robinson wasn’t alone on the All-American podium in the high jump as Denison junior Hannah Hall (New Richmond, OH/New Richmond) tied for fourth at a height of 5’07.00” for her first-career All-American finish. 

A pair of NCAC women runners also capped of their seasons on the track with fourth-place individual finishes, including Ohio Wesleyan senior Sarah Fowler (Mt. Vernon, OH/Fredericktown) in the 3,000-meter steeple chase with a time of 10:44.20 and Oberlin junior Lilah Drafts-Johnson (Melrose, CA/Melrose) with a school-record time of 1:00.78. Fowler and Drafts-Johnson both improved upon their positions in their respective events from the 2016 national meet as Fowler finished sixth in the steeple chase and Drafts-Johnson placed seventh in the 400-meter hurdles a year ago. 

On the men’s side, Wittenberg junior Tyler Gittins (Westerville, OH/Columbus Academy) out performed his seed in the 400-meter hurdles by finishing third overall in the championship heat with a school-record time of 52.26. Gittins, who entered the event ranked 14th out of 20 runners with a seed time of 53.07, posted the sixth-fastest time in the prelims at 53.28.

Finally, Ohio Wesleyan junior Nate Newman (Chillicothe, OH/Zane Trace) rounded out the list of All-Americans from the NCAC as he finished eighth overall in the decathlon with a combined score of 6,566 points. His top individual finish within the decathlon came in the pole vault at third-place with a leap of 14’05.25”.

Thirteen additional NCAC student-athletes were also in competition over the weekend in Northeast Ohio, including the female student-athlete contingent of Oberlin junior Monique Newton (Sacramento, CA/Rancho Cordova), Oberlin freshman Naeisha McClain (Columbus, GA/Brookstone), Denison junior Arlesha Cospy (Trotwood, OH/Trotwood-Madison), Wooster sophomore Carolyn Webster (Fredericktown, OH/Fredericktown), Ohio Wesleyan junior Amanda Clay (Van Wert, OH/Van Wert), Ohio Wesleyan junior Emily Brown (New Concord, OH/John Glenn), Oberlin freshman Shannon Wargo (LaGrange, OH/Keystone), Allegheny sophomore Sarah Hevener (Hilliard, OH/Bradley)

For the men, the NCAC was also represented by Allegheny senior Dan Cheung (Northbrook, IL/Glenbrook North), Ohio Wesleyan senior Brian Burnett (Hamilton, OH/Cincinnati Country Day), Ohio Wesleyan senior Ifa Abduljelil (Whitehall, OH/Whitehall-Yearling), Allegheny junior Carter Smith (Cranberry Twp., PA/Eden Christian Academy) and Denison sophomore David Carter (New Albany, OH/Westminster, CT).