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May 30, 2013

Smith & Jones grab Academic All-District honors

Junior Kierra Smith (along with senior Sarahbeth Jones) was named to the Capital One Academic All-District team as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). Both Smith and Jones will now advance to the national ballot.

A pair of standout athletes on the Augustana women's track & field team were named to the Capital One Academic All-District Team it was announced today. Senior distance runner Sarahbeth Jones (Warren Township HS, Wadsworth, Ill.) and junior hurdler Kierra Smith (Creston HS, Creston, Iowa) were both named to the first team in District Seven (Illinois, Indiana & Ohio) and will now be advanced to the national ballot for Academic All-American consideration by the College Sports Information Directors of America.

Jones put the finishing touches on a tremendous career at Augustana by placing ninth in the NCAA Division III Outdoor Track & Field Championships in the 1500. She ran a time of 4:29.29 in the finals to break her own school record of 4:31.29 by exactly two seconds.  

She was named the "Track Athlete of the Meet" in the College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin championships on May 4 when she won both the 10,000 (37:22.36) and the 5000 in a meet record time of 17:28.01. During her career, Jones won five CCIW titles - twice in the indoor 3000, twice in the outdoor 5000 and once in the outdoor 10,000. She holds six Augustana school records and had the best time on the team in five events during the recently concluded outdoor season.  

Jones has been all-conference 13 times during her career and twice finished in the top five at the CCIW cross country meet. She was team captain in both track & field and cross country and was the team MVP in cross country, indoor and outdoor track & field each of the last two years. She also has a ninth place finish in the NCAA Division III outdoor 5000 as a junior in 2012.  

An English and communications major, she sports a 3.60 grade point average. She also won the Jack Swartz Award in the CCIW three times during her junior year.  

Smith earned NCAA Division III All-American honors last week at the national meet when she placed seventh in the 400 intermediate hurdles with a time 1:01.63, which was just off her school record of 1:01.56 set just a week earlier. She was a double winner in the CCIW meet on May 4 in Decatur, Illinois when she took the 100 hurdles (:15.17) and the 400 hurdles (1:01.56). She also owns the fastest time on the team this year in the open 400 with a clocking of :58.30.  

She shared the team MVP honors with Jones in outdoor track in 2012 and indoor and outdoor track in 2013. Smith is also a part of school records in both the distance medley and 1600 relays and has been all-conference 14 times during her career. She owns the team's best times this past season in the 200, 400, 100 hurdles and 400 hurdles. She was the team's Most Valuable Freshman in 2011.  

Smith carries a 3.55 grade point average with majors in political science and accounting.  

Augustana has been one of the nation's leaders in producing Academic All-Americans since the program began in 1952 under the sponsorship of the CoSIDA. There have been 142 Vikings earn Academic All-American recognition and Augustana currently ranked sixth in the nation in all divisions and second among NCAA Division III institutions.