2011 MIAC Women's Outdoor Track & Field Awards

2011 MIAC Women's Outdoor Track & Field Awards

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- The 2011 Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) Outdoor Track & Field Championships came to a close on Saturday afternoon with the St. Thomas women capturing the team title. This week, individual awards were announced and the honorees are listed below.

As part of a conference-wide sportsmanship initiative, the MIAC selected the fifth annual All-MIAC Sportsmanship team for Women's Outdoor Track & Field. Members of the All-MIAC Sportsmanship team are selected by their coaches and teammates as individuals who demonstrate ideals of positive sportsmanship both on and off the field of competition.

Outstanding Women's Track Athlete - Simone Childs-Walker, Carleton
- Childs-Walker (Jr., Seattle, Wash./Lakeside) added another great chapter to her historic career at Carleton Saturday when she won both the 5,000-meter run and the 10,000-meter run for the third year in a row. Childs-Walker's winning times were 17:18.75 in the 5K and 36:33.71 in the 10K. Both times not only met the NCAA Division III provisional qualifying standard for nationals, but they also were new stadium records at Gustavus Adolphus College. Childs-Walker holds the top time in the MIAC in both events this season and has met the NCAA's automatic time in the 10K. Just a junior, she'll have a chance for a career sweep in both events in 2012.

Outstanding Women's Field Athlete - Janey Helland, Gustavus
- Helland (Sr., Mapleton, Minn./Maple River) showcased her versatile athletic skills Saturday in her home stadium with a pair of MIAC individual titles and four top-three finishes. Helland won her second-straight title in the heptathlon with a score of 4,595, and she also finished first in the long jump with a distance of 18-04.5 (5.60 meters). In addition, Helland placed second in the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 64.60 and she was third in the javelin with a distance of 122-0 (37.19 meters.

Women's Outstanding Co-Performance of the Meet - Janey Helland, Gustavus, and Simone Childs-Walker, Carleton
- Helland (Sr., Mapleton, Minn./Maple River) was also honored specifically for her performance in the heptathlon. The Gustie senior's winning score of 4,595 was more than 300 points better than the runner-up, and her score bypassed both the NCAA Division III provisional and automatic qualifying marks for the national championships. This was Helland's second consecutive MIAC outdoor title in the heptathlon, where she finished first in the 100-meter hurdles, long jump, javelin and 800-meter run, second in the high jump and shot put and fifth in the 200-meter dash.
- Childs-Walker (Jr., Seattle, Wash./Lakeside) was singled out for her dual greatness in the MIAC's outdoor distance events. Childs-Walker was a double-winner in the 5,000-meter run and the 10,000-meter run for the third year in a row, meaning she has never lost either race during her MIAC Outdoor track career. This year, Childs-Walker's times of 17:18.75 in the 5K and 36:33.71 in the 10K both met the NCAA's provisional qualifying mark, and she forever left her mark on the Gustavus track, as both times are new stadium records.

Women's Coach-of-the-Year - Joe Sweeney, St. Thomas
- Sweeney won his 67th MIAC women's team title in cross country and indoor/outdoor track and field as St. Thomas scored 143.5 points to take first place by a margin of nine points. The Tommies have now won 25 of the last 27 MIAC outdoor team titles. Sweeney's team won two events and scored in 17 of 22 events at Saturday's championships at Gustavus.

2011 All-MIAC Sportsmanship Team
Augsburg - Katie Vrieze (Sr., Richfield, Minn.)
Bethel - Kayla Jelen (Sr., Sioux Falls, S.D./Lincoln)
Carleton - Clare Franco (Jr., Brunswick, Maine)
Concordia - Kaitlyn Boily (Sr., Zimmerman, Minn.)
Gustavus - Janie Briant (Sr., Coon Rapids, Minn./Blaine)
Hamline - Robyn Wernberg (Sr., Nisswa, Minn./Brainerd)
Macalester - Ana Armitage (Fr., Rickton, Ill./Hononegah Community)
Saint Benedict - Maria Gans (Sr., Rice, Minn./Sauk Rapids-Rice)
St. Catherine - Stephanie Mueller (Fr., St. Francis, Minn.)
Saint Mary's - Brittany Kuehn (Sr., Sauk Rapids, Minn./Sauk Rapids-Rice)
St. Olaf - Becca Neuger (Sr., Northfield, Minn.)
St. Thomas - Felisha Willaert (Sr., Lakeville, Minn./South)

2011 MIAC Outdoor Track & Field Championships Website