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May 31, 2013

Jones, Smith & Bacon share MVP award

Senior Sarahbeth Jones (left) and sophomore Jessica Bacon (right) shared the MVP award with junior hurdler Kierra Smith for the Vikings in the spring of 2013.

Senior Sarahbeth Jones (Warren Township HS, Wadsworth, Ill.), junior Kierra Smith (Creston HS, Creston, Iowa) and sophomore Jessica Bacon (Rock Island HS, Rock Island, Ill.) have been selected as Most Valuable Performers for Coach Fred Whiteside's Augustana track & field program for 2013. All three qualified for this year's NCAA Division III Outdoor Championships in La Crosse, Wisconsin.

Jones was a three-time CCIW champion this year and set four individual school records and one as a relay member. She set a meet record of 10:16.92 in winning the conference indoor 3000-meter title and took third in the 5000. At the CCIW outdoor meet, she pulled off a rare double, winning the both the 5000 (17:28.01) and 10,000 (37:22.36). She set school records this year in the 3000 (10:14.66) and 4x800 relay (9:31.21) indoors and the 3000 (9:53.85) and 4x1600 relay (21:07.38) outdoors. Her final school mark came at the NCAA Division III Outdoor Championships, when she broke her own 1500-meter record by two seconds with a ninth-place 4:29.29. She served as a team captain this year along with fellow seniors Samantha Bazely (Alleman HS, Coal Valley, Ill.), Annie Heifner (Oregon HS, Oregon, Wis.), Jennifer Prazak (Naperville North HS, Naperville, Ill.) and Taylor Tjardes (Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley HS, Gibson City, Ill.).  

For her career, Jones won six CCIW championships and owns or is a part of nine school records. In addition to the school marks she set this year, she's also the outdoor 5000 record-holder (16:53.57) and a member of the record indoor (12:13.73) and outdoor (12:15.79) distance medley relays and outdoor 4x800 relay (9:21.93). She missed earning All-America honors by just one spot as both a junior and senior. In addition to her ninth-place 1500 performance at this year's national meet, she was ninth in the 5000 last year.  

Smith, Augustana's school record holder in the 400 hurdles (1:01.56), won All-America honors with a seventh-place finish at this year's national meet. She was a double winner at this year's CCIW outdoor meet, taking both the 100 and 400-meter hurdle events. She's a three-time CCIW champion in her career and in addition to her 400 hurdles mark, she helped set school records in the outdoor distance medley (12:15.79) and 4x400 (3:51.04) relays. Smith is also a captain-elect for the 2014 season along with classmates Kristyn Barton (York HS, Elmhurst, Ill.), Johanna Schnitzler (Downers Grove South HS, Woodridge, Ill.) and Kristen Whiteside (Zion Benton HS, Winthrop Harbor, Ill.).  

Bacon took 10th place in the 1500 with a 4:32.55 at this year's NCAA Division III Outdoor Championship. At the CCIW outdoor meet, she finished second in both the 800 and 1500 and was third in the 5000. In addition, she competed on record-setting indoor 4x800 and outdoor 4x1600 relays this year and was part of the indoor and outdoor distance medley relay records set last year. Bacon was also selected, along with sophomore Lizzie Lundine (Willowbrook HS, Villa Park, Ill.) and juniors Amanda Pease (United Township HS, East Moline, Ill.) and Whiteside as winners of this year's Susan Wall Most Improved award.  

Other award winners for this year's Vikings included hurdler Annie Martines (St. Charles East HS, St. Charles, Ill.), selected Freshman MVP and classmate Anna Walsh (Mahtomedi HS, Mahtomedi, Minn.), who won the Erica Vortman Viking Award.  

2013 AUGUSTANA WOMEN'S TRACK & FIELD LETTERWINNERS

NAME YR EVENT HOMETOWN/HIGH SCHOOL
Rachel Akmakjian* Fr Sprints Fort Collins, Col./Poudre
Jessica Bacon** So Mid Distance Rock Island, Ill./HS
Kristyn Barton *** Jr Mid Distance Elmhurst, Ill./York
Samantha Bazely *** (C) Sr Long Jump - Triple Jump Coal Valley, Ill./Alleman
Liana Beauchamp *** Jr Hammer - Shot Kingston, Ill./Genoa-Kingston
Kate Benge** Jr Sprints - Mid Distance Bettendorf, Iowa/Pleasant Valley
Veronica Bertellotti** So Triple Jump - Sprints Mount Prospect, Ill./Prospect
Kris Bowen** So Mid Distance Elburn, Ill./Kaneland
Kayla Bushey* Fr Long Jump - Triple Jump Chicago, Ill./Luther North
Theresa Coverick*** Sr Distance Palos Park, Ill./Stagg
Danielle Engel* Fr Pole Vault Saint Charles, Ill./North
Emma Grandgeorge *** Jr Distance Sycamore, Ill./HS
Annie Heifner **** (C) Sr Mid Distance - Steeple Oregon, Wis./HS
Taelar Hillyer** Jr Pole Vault Bettendorf, Iowa/Alleman
Lauren Hoffman* Sr Jumps Winfield, Ill./Wheaton North
Haley Jones* Fr Jumper Knoxville, Ill./HS
Sarahbeth Jones**** (C) Sr Mid Distance Wadsworth, Ill./Warren Township
Rachel Kelly** So Distance Downers Grove, Ill./South
Emalee Leigh* Fr Pole Vault Hampton, Ill./ United Township
Hana Lobsinger* Fr Distance Wheaton, Ill./Wheaton-Warrenville South
Lizzie Lundine** So Distance Villa Park, Ill./Willowbrook
Emily Lutton* So Sprints - Hurdles Omaha, Neb./Elkhorn
Annie Martines* Fr Hurdles Saint Charles, Ill./East
Kelsey Moon *** Jr Mid Distance Wauconda, Ill./Mundelein
Astin Moravek** So Triple Jump Riverside, Ill./Riverside - Brookfield
Allison Nagy** Jr Sprints Naperville, Ill./Neuqua Valley
Catie Nelson* Fr Pole Vault Annawan, Ill./Geneseo
Amanda Pease *** Jr Steeplechase East Moline, Ill./United Township
Kirstillyn Pohlman **** Sr Mid Distance Winthrop Harbor, Ill./Zion Benton
Laura Polizzi** So Triple Jump Crystal Lake, Ill./South
Julia Popp *** Jr Heptathlon Belvidere, Ill./Boylan Catholic
Jennifer Prazak **** (C) Sr Mid Distance Naperville, Ill./North
Amanda Rodriguez *** Sr Distance Mahomet, Ill./Mahomet-Seymour
Rachel Rodriguez* Fr Distance Mahomet, Ill./Mahomet-Seymour
Lauren Schneiderbauer* Jr Javelin Sterling, Ill./HS
Johanna Schnitzler *** Jr Heptathlon Woodridge, Ill./Downers Grove South
Kierra Smith *** Jr Hurdles Creston, Iowa/HS
Stephanie Sorrentino* Fr Sprints Elmhurst, Ill./York
Lorraine Stamberger** So Mid Distance La Moille, Ill./HS
Becca Sund** So Mid Distance Palatine, Ill./HS
Taylor Tjardes **** (C) Sr Pole Vault - Javelin Gibson City, Ill./Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley
Anna Urbanczyk* Fr Long Jump - Triple Jump Northbrook, Ill./Glenbrook North
Anna Walsh* Fr Mid Distance Mahtomedi, Minn./HS
Kristen Whiteside *** Jr Mid Distance Winthrop Harbor, Ill./Zion Benton