New Orleans -- St. Thomas senior Brian Sames has been named Central Region's Male Indoor Track Athlete of the Year by the United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA). Tommie head coach Steve Mathre was also named the USTFCCCA Central Region Coach of the Year.
Mathre recently coached his men’s indoor track team to an astounding 25th consecutive MIAC Championship. St. Thomas currently sits in eighth in the USTFCCCA Indoor Dual Meet Rankings, and Mathre-coached athletes have posted seven qualifying performances this season.
Sames, a senior from Shakopee, posted the nation’s third best mark in the 800 meters (1:52.70) and 14th fastest time in the mile run (4:13.17) to set school records in both. He has set four official and unofficial school records this indoor season for St. Thomas and helped the Tommies win the MIAC team championship for the 25th time in 25 chances as he won the 800 and 1000.
Sames also runs on the St. Thomas distance-medley relay squad that owns the nation’s top time this season (9:58.31). Sames will compete in the DM Relay and the 800 at this weekend's NCAA Championships in Terre Haute, Ind. He placed fifth last March at indoor nationals to earn All-America honors.
Besides his 800 and mile records, Sames ranks in St. Thomas' top four all-time indoors in the 600, and 1,000, and ranks seventh outdoors in the 800. He's also on the Toms' school-record distance medley relay (indoors) and 4x800 relay (outdoors).
In the 2008 MIAC outdoor meet, Sames had a hand in two victories -- the 800 (1:53.17) and the 4x800, which won a meet-record time of 7:36.41. Sames also ran on the Toms' runner-up 4x400 relay. Sames later clocked 1:51.81 at a May last-chance meet to reach the NCAA meet, but didn't place at outdoor nationals.
Sames placed 19th at last fall's MIAC cross country championships.