Kai Schmidt, De’Shalyn Jones Named Outdoor Athletes of the Year

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FRISCO, Texas – Abilene Christian thrower Kai Schmidt and Northwestern State sprinter De’Shalyn Jones are the 2018 Southland Conference Outdoor Track & Field Athletes of the Year, the league announced Tuesday along with complete all-conference teams. Southland yearly awards are presented by Ready Nutrition.

Men’s Athlete of the Year & Men’s Outstanding Field Events Performer – Kai Schmidt, Abilene Christian

Schmidt was awarded the conference’s top accolade after reaching the podium three times at the Southland Outdoor Championships. The senior from Krefeld, Germany, won the shot put and discus throw along with a bronze-medal finish in the javelin.

Men’s Outstanding Running Events Performer – Chris Jefferson, Sam Houston State

Jefferson put on a well-rounded effort for the Bearkats to help pace them to a team title. The junior took gold in the 200m, silver in the 100m and bronze in both the 4x100m and 4x400m.

Men’s Freshman of the Year – Zack Johnson, Sam Houston State

Johnson reached the top of the podium in his first year with the Bearkats, taking gold in the long jump. He narrowly missed out on a second medal, finishing fourth in the triple jump.

Men’s Newcomer of the Year – Matthew Arnold, Lamar

The junior from London, England, earned a silver medal in the 5,000m and bronze medal in the 3,000m steeplechase in his first season in Beaumont.

Men’s Coach of the Year – David Self, Sam Houston State

In his ninth year at the helm of Sam Houston State, Self led the Bearkats to their second straight men’s team title and fourth overall. It is the second time the program has won back-to-back titles since its first two in 2005 and 2006.

Women’s Athlete of the Year & Women’s Outstanding Field Events Performer – De’Shalyn Jones, Northwestern State

This marks Jones’ second consecutive season as the outdoor championship high point scorer, Athlete of the Year and Outstanding Running Events Performer. The senior out of Tyler, Texas, took gold in the 100m, 200m, 4x100m and 4x400m, all for the second straight year.

Women’s Outstanding Field Events Performer – Tristyn Allen, Sam Houston State

Allen earned Outstanding Field Events Performer honors for the second straight season, led by a repeat gold medal in the triple jump. The junior from Sealy, Texas, also took a silver medal in the long jump.

Women’s Freshman of the Year – Migle Muraskaite, Lamar

A Vilnius, Lithuania, native, Muraskaite made her mark at her first Southland outdoor meet. She took silver in the heptathlon while also getting on the podium with a silver in the javelin throw.

Women’s Newcomer of the Year – Allyson Girard, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi

The junior transfer from Mesa Community College (Ariz.) earned a comfortable gold medal in the 1,500m finals to go along with a fourth-place finish in the 5,000m behind teammate Rabea Schoneborn.

Women’s Coach of the Year – David Self, Sam Houston State

Self earned his third Women’s Outdoor Coach of the Year award of his career after leading the Bearkats to their third team championship in five years. It is the program’s sixth overall, second only to Stephen F. Austin’s eight.

Outdoor track & field individual awards are nominated and voted on by the league’s head coaches. Voting for oneself or one’s own athletes is not permitted. The top three finishers from each event’s final at the championship meet are automatically named All-Southland Conference.

2018 Southland Conference Outdoor Track & Field All-Conference Teams

Event

First Team

Second Team

Third Team

Women’s 10,000m

Alexandria Hackett, ACU

Rabea Schoneborn, AMCC

Michaela Hackett, ACU

Men’s 10,000m

Jamie Crowe, LU

Nathan Jones, MCN

Markus Schweikert, UCA

Men’s Decathlon

Brian Donna, SLU

James Manders, AMCC

Rodney Littlejohn, UIW

Women’s Heptathlon

Grace McKenzie, MCN

Migle Muraskaite, LU

Baylee Lara, SHSU

Men’s Hammer Throw

Josh Hernandez, SHSU

Aaron Akens, SHSU

Michael Seither, SLU

Women’s Hammer Throw

Yarixza Rivera, SHSU

Vigdis Jonsdottir, SLU

Kayla Melgar, ACU

Men’s Long Jump

Zachary Johnson, SHSU

Rodney Ruffin, SLU

Tyler Adams, SHSU

Women’s Javelin Throw

Morgan Woods, MCN

Migle Muraskaite, LU

Charlotte Wissing, SLU

Men’s Pole Vault

Clayton Fritsch, SHSU

Garrett Larson, SHSU

Chad Horstmann, SFA

Women’s Long Jump

Sarea Alexander, UIW

Tristyn Allen, SHSU

Jasmyn Steels, NSU

Women’s 3,000m Steeple

Brittany Innis, SFA

Taryn Surratt, SFA

Danielle Martinez, UIW

Men’s 3,000m Steeple

Ryan Cleary, ACU

Adam Herrera, UIW

Matthew Arnold, LU

Women’s Shot Put

Kristine Hanks, SHSU

Halie Daniel, SHSU

Chantel Ward, HBU

Men’s Discus

Kai Schmidt, ACU

Joshua Hunter, ACU

Ryan Simmons, ACU

Men’s High Jump

Eric Moore, UCA

Tyler Adams, SHSU

Lentz Similien, MCN

Men’s Triple Jump

John Lemke, MCN

Brian O’Bonna, LU

Lentz Similien, MCN

Men’s Shot Put

Kai Schmidt, ACU

Hiram Morales, MCN

Cedric Paul, NSU

Women’s Discus

Kayla Melgar, ACU

Tasha Crosse, SHSU

Lonnie Smith, ACU

Women’s High Jump

Sashane Hanson, AMCC

Makenzie Smajstrla, SHSU

Fadeke Adeola, UNO

Women’s Triple Jump

Tristyn Allen, SHSU

Sarea Alexander, UIW

Natayla Nance, HBU

Men’s Javelin Throw

Donavon Banks, MCN

Cord Neal, SFA

Kai Schmidt, ACU

Women’s Pole Vault

Kaylee Bizzell, SFA

Hannah McWilliams, AMCC

Mackenzie West, ACU

Women’s 4x100m

D. Gordon, D. Jones, D. Moore, N. Jackson – NSU

D. Jackson, C. Singleton, I. Nave, A. Teel – SFA

T. Williams, D. Phillips, D. Taylor, T. Hardy – LU

Men’s 4x100m

K. Harry, M. Larkins, A. James, T. Carr – NSU

A. Piper, J. Love, T. Hawkins, K. Lacy – SFA

F. McCall, C. Jefferson, AJ Tisdel, L. Coleman – SHSU

Women’s 1,500m

Allyson Girard, AMCC

Kelsey Ramirez, SFA

Alex Eykelbosch, MCN

Men’s 1,500m

Garett Cortez, UIW

Grant O’Callaghan, SLU

Joshua Wilkins, NSU

Women’s 100m Hurdles

Daeshon Gordon, NSU

Jerica Love, UIW

Braneshia Payton, NSU

Men’s 110m Hurdles

Fabian McCall, SHSU

Kerry Gleason, SFA

Darion Dunn, MCN

Women’s 400m

Natashia Jackson, NSU

Imani Nave, SFA

Kodii Church, SHSU

Men’s 400m

Avery Williams, ACU

Blaze Brownlow, ACU

Daniel Lawson, UCA

Women’s 100m

De’Shalyn Jones, NSU

Thai Williams, LU

Kenaysia Dixon, SHSU

Men’s 100m

Micah Larkins, NSU

Chris Jefferson, SHSU

Cliff Resais, SLU

Women’s 800m

Kierstin Santana, HBU

Camry Grigsby, SHSU

Jamie Eckford, SHSU

Men’s 800m

Alex Hanson, UCA

Drake Murphy, SFA

Daniel Shelton, HBU

Women’s 400m Hurdles

Daeshon Gordon, NSU

Dominique Jackson, SFA

Megan Smith, SHSU

Men’s 400m Hurdles

Kerry Gleason, SFA

Collin Sepulveda, UIW

Gerald Coleman, SLU

Women’s 200m

De’Shalyn Jones, NSU

Kenaysia Dixon, SHSU

Imani Nave, SFA

Men’s 200m

Chris Jefferson, SHSU

Cliff Resais, SLU

Amir James, NSU

Women’s 5,000m

Michaela Hackett, ACU

Alexandria Hackett, ACU

Rabea Schoneborn, AMCC

Men’s 5,000m

Enrique Soto, MCN

Matthew Arnold, LU

Jorge Quintero, UIW

Women’s 4x400m

T. Style, D. Jones, N. Jackson, W. Lageroy – NSU

T. Spivey, J. Mitchell, C. Grigsby, K. Church – SHSU

T. Mays, V. Jackson, L. Simmons, E. Sebastion – UIW

Men’s 4x400m

J. Williams, B. Brownlow, A. Williams, R. Linton – ACU

D. Murphy, T. Hawkins, K. Gleason, C. Fentress – SFA

E. Pouncy, E. Woods, C. Jefferson, L. Coleman – SHSU