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June 1, 2006

2006 MEN'S OUTDOOR TRACK REVIEW

Nick Johnson and Ted McMillan earn NCAA Division III All-America status as Vikings place 18th in nation; McMillan is named MVP of CCIW championship; McMillan and Tom McIntire win team MVP honors

 

For Nick Johnson (Lincoln Way HS, New Lenox, Ill.) it was a fitting end to a longer than usual career while Ted McMillan (Erie HS, Cordova, Ill.) hopes that it will be the beginning of a stellar four years of wearing the blue and gold. The “it” refers to NCAA Division III All-America status and both Johnson and McMillan earned that moniker at the national track & field championship over the week of May 25-27 at Benedictine University in Lisle, Illinois.

 

Johnson was supposed to graduate in the spring of 2005 but a foot injury cost him his senior season. A two time College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin champion in his specialty, the 3000 meter steeplechase, Johnson decided to come back for a fifth year to pursue his ultimate goal – All America status. He worked at Walgreen’s during the fall and winter and trained with the national meet in line. His spring season had its shares of ups and downs but he managed to win his third conference title in the steeplechase and he ran 9:13.40 on May 11 to qualify for nationals.

 

When he got to the national meet he was rewarded for all his sacrifices by placing third in the 3,000 steeplechase with a time of 9:06.29, the third fastest in Augustana history. Only Sandu Rebenciuc (8:58.04 in 1993) and Rob Jensen (9:02.73 in 1981) have run faster in a Viking uniform. Marcharia Yuot of Widener won the event in 9:03.88 and Grant Scott of Haverford took second in 9:04.77.

 

McMillan, a wondrously talented athlete, earned a pair of All-America certificates to wrap up a tremendous freshman year. He placed fourth in the high jump with a clearance of 6’ 9”. Earlier this year, during the indoor season, he was second in the nation at the NCAA Division III national indoor championship. Todd Lowber of Ramapo won the high jump with a clearance of 7’ 0 �”. McMillan also added a fourth place finish in the 400 intermediate hurdles with a time of :52.48 in the finals, behind the winning time of :51.25 by Jeff Jasmin of Lincoln University. McMillan set a new school record with a time of :52.37 in the preliminary rounds, breaking the old mark of :52.55 by Mark Zemke in 1996.

 

Senior Tom McIntire (Galva HS, Galva, Ill.) placed ninth in the hammer throw, just missing All-America recognition. He had a best throw of 177’ 8” in the final after recording a mark of 175’ 0” in the preliminary flight.

 

Augustana used the points of Johnson and McMillan to finish 18th in the nation in the team standings with 15.5.

 

McMillan was named the Most Outstanding Performer in the CCIW meet, which was held at Millikin University in Decatur, Illinois on May 5-6. He won the high jump with a leap of 6’ 6 �” and the 400 hurdles in :53.83. He also finished second in the 110 high hurdles with a time of :15.18 and ran a leg on the second place 1600 relay.

 

Thanks in large part to McMillan’s efforts, Augustana placed second in the team standings with 163 points. It was the 25th time in head coach Paul Olsen’s long career that the Vikings finished second in the conference meet. McIntire uncorked a toss of 175’ 3” in the hammer throw to win the sixth individual conference championship in his career. He now owns three titles in the 35 pound weight toss indoors and three in the hammer throw outdoors. Johnson won the 3000 steeplechase for the third time with a clocking of 9:26.68 after also winning in 2003 and 2004. Jason Petit (Rochester HS, Rochester, Ill.) won the  pole vault with a clearance of 15’ 5”.

 

Augustana won the Early Spring Opener on March 18 and the Viking Olympics on April 1 and finished second in the Meet of Champions on April 22 and the CCIW championship on May 6.

 

McIntire and McMillan were the co-MVP’s of the team by a vote of their teammates. McIntire won the MVP award for the field events after recording the best throws on the team in three different events (hammer, shot put and discus). He was also voted the school’s “Senior Athlete of the Year” by the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (S.A.A.C.) and he leaves Augustana with school records in both the 35 pound weight toss (indoors) and hammer throw (outdoors). He is also the CCIW record holder in both events. This past year he had a best throw of 182’ 0” in the hammer, 156’ 1” in the discus and 46’ 4 �” in the shot put.

 

McMillan served notice of big things during the indoor season when he earned All-America honors by placing second in the indoor national meet in the high jump. He went on to set a new school record in the 400 intermediate hurdles (:52.37) and he also recorded a 7’ 0” high jump in the first outdoor meet of the campaign.

Evan Holschbach (Princeton HS, Princeton, Ill.) and Kyle Ekberg (Rockford Christian HS, Rockford, Ill.) shared the Most Valuable Freshman track performer and Steve Sulfridge (Wheaton North HS, Wheaton, Ill.) was voted the Most Valuable Freshman field performer.

 

Holschbach had the fastest time on the team in 200 at :22.18 and he also ran anchor on the 400 relay. He placed fifth in the 200 in the CCIW meet. Ekberg handled the anchor leg on the 1600 relay team that ran 3:15.64 and made NCAA Division III provisional qualifying. Sulfridge placed third in the CCIW in the pole vault with a clearance of 14’ 5 �”.

 

Junior Yancy Gillespie (Kewanee HS, Kewanee, Ill.) and sophomore Josh Sharko (York HS, Elmhurst, Ill.) were the co-winners of the Most Improved award. Johnson and Dan Leonard (Fremd HS, Palatine, Ill.) shared the Most Inspirational honor.

 

Captains-elect for 2007 season will be Jeff Bailey (Deerfield HS, Deerfield, Ill.), Tim Frey (Hersey HS, Arlington Heights, Ill.), James Hawkins (Mundelein HS, Mundelein, Ill.), Jason Petit (Rochester HS, Rochester, Ill.), Dan Slonina (St. Charles North HS, St. Charles, Ill.) and Dillon Smith (Rock Island HS, Rock Island, Ill.).

 

2006 CCIW CHAMPIONSHIPS

May 5-6, 2006 *** Frank M. Lindsay Field *** Decatur, Illinois

 

TEAM SCORES: 1. North Central 232; 2. AUGUSTANA 163; 3. Carthage 124; 4. Wheaton 106; 5. Millikin 92; 6. Elmhurst 65; 7. Illinois Wesleyan 32; 8. North Park 3.

 

INDIVIDUAL EVENT WINNERS

100 – Matt Harden, Illinois Wesleyan :10.82

200 – Quintin Bailey, Elmhurst :21.62

400 – Adam Pennington, North Central :47.91

800 – Julius White, North Central 1:54.83

1500 – Andy Hubner, North Central 3:54.75

3000 Steeplechase – NICK JOHNSON, AUGUSTANA 9:26.68

5000 – Nick Hird, North Central 14:55.49

10,000 – Nick Hird, North Central 31:39.12

110 High Hurdles – Josh Hammar, Wheaton :15.15

400 Intermediate Hurdles – TED MCMILLAN, AUGUSTANA :53.83

400 Relay – Illinois Wesleyan (Matt Harden, Segun Olopo, Azizuddin Rose, Erich Sauer) :41.77

1600 Relay – North Central (Stephen Schnackel, Adam Pennington, Julius White, Pat Warren) 3:17.11

High Jump – TED MCMILLAN, AUGUSTANA 6’ 6 �”

Pole Vault – JASON PETIT, AUGUSTANA 15’ 5”

Long Jump – Seantae Holland, Millikin 23’ 5 �”

Triple Jump – Isreal Brown, North Central 46’ 7 �”

Shot Put – Jon Booker, Millikin 49’ 9 �”

Discus – Lance Brooks, Millikin 179’ 10”

Hammer – TOM MCINTIRE, AUGUSTANA 175’ 3”

Javelin – Wes Schroeder, Carthage 182’ 2”

Decathlon – Nate Mealy, Wheaton 6,194

MOST OUTSTANDING PERFORMER: Ted McMillan, Augustana

 

2006 AUGUSTANA MEN’S TRACK & FIELD SUPERLATIVES

NCAA DIVISION III ALL-AMERICA: 400 hurdles – Ted McMillan, 4th in :52.48

NCAA DIVISION III ALL-AMERICA: High jump – Ted McMillan, 4th at 6’ 9”

NCAA DIVISION III ALL-AMERICA: 3000 steeplechase – Nick Johnson, 3rd in 9:06.29

AUGUSTANA SCHOOL RECORD: 400 hurdles – Ted McMillan, :52.37 – breaking old mark of :52.55 by Mark Zemke in 1996

CCIW “MOST OUTSTANDING PERFORMER”: Ted McMillan

CCIW INDIVIDUAL CHAMPION: 400 hurdles – Ted McMillan - :53.83

CCIW INDIVIDUAL CHAMPION: High jump – Ted McMillan – 6’ 6 �”

CCIW INDIVIDUAL CHAMPION: Hammer throw – Tom McIntire – 175’ 3” (third straight title – 2004-05-06)

CCIW INDIVIDUAL CHAMPION: 3000 steeplechase – Nick Johnson – 9:26.68 (third title – 2003-04 & 06)

CCIW INDIVIDUAL CHAMPION: Pole vault – Jason Petit – 15’ 5”

 

NCAA DIVISION III NATIONAL MEET QUALIFIERS

3000 Steeplechase – Nick Johnson…9:13.4 on 05/12/06 @ Dr. Keeler Invitational

Hammer Throw – Tom McIntire…182’ 0” on 05/19/06 @ Midwest Championships

400 Hurdles – Ted McMillan…:53.30 on 05/19/06 @ Midwest Championships

High Jump – Ted McMillan…7’ 0 �” on 03/17/06 @ Early Spring Opener

 

(Provisional qualifiers who did not make the final national meet field)

1600 Relay – Kyle Ekberg, Yancy Gillespie, Mike Lucchetti, Ted McMillan…3:15.64 on 05/19/06 @ Midwest Championships

110 High Hurdles – Ted McMillan…:14.85 on 04/22/06 @ Meet of Champions

Pole Vault – Jason Petit…15’ 5” on 05/05/06 @ CCIW

Decathlon – Ted McMillan…6,194 on 03/17-18/06 @ Early Spring Opener

 

AUGUSTANA TEAM AWARDS

MVP TRACK EVENTS: Ted McMillan

MVP FIELD EVENTS: Tom McIntire

MVP FRESHMEN TRACK EVENTS: Even Holschbach & Kyle Ekberg

MVP FRESHMEN FIELD EVENTS: Steve Sulfridge

MOST IMPROVED: Yancy Gillespie & Josh Sharko

MOST INSPIRATIONAL: Nick Johnson & Dan Leonard

CAPTAIN ELECTS FOR 2007: Jeff Bailey, Tim Frey, James Hawkins, Jason Petit, Dan Slonina & Dillon Smith