Nelson and Grove-McDonough Garner Regional Honors
NEW ORLEANS – Iowa State women’s cross country held the spotlight this morning, as Crystal Nelson and head coach Andrea Grove-McDonough each garner postseason awards from the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA). Nelson was named Women’s Midwest Regional Athlete of the Year and Grove-McDonough earned Midwest Women’s Coach of the Year honors, as were voted by the region’s coaches.
Nelson has been the Cyclones’ front-runner in the 2013 campaign, finishing in the top-10 in every race and winning the individual title at last Friday’s Midwest Regional. The Winchester, Va., native finished the 6-kilometer regional race 8 seconds ahead of the next runner and led the women to their fourth regional title in as many years. The sophomore runner has also notched three top-3 finishes on the season, including a runner-up finish at the Big 12 Championships.
In Grove-McDonough’s first season at the helm, she has led the program to a No. 7 national ranking outside of the top-25 to a No. 7 national ranking. The Cyclones have been ranked in the top-10 in the coaches’ association’s three latest polls.
Under Grove-McDonough’s tutelage, the Cyclones had five student-athletes earn All-Big 12 recognition in Nelson, Bethanie Brown, Katy Moen, Perez Rotich and Samantha Bluske. Brown, a freshman, was also named the Big 12 Women’s Newcomer of the Year, as the first newcomer to cross the line at the Big 12 Championships.
The women’s team has not finished outside of the top-five in any of their six races and have defeated 16 nationally ranked programs on year.
To view the complete USTFCCCA release, click here.
The Cyclones are set to compete at the NCAA Championships Saturday. Mohamed Hrezi qualified as an individual and will compete in the men’s race at 11:00 a.m. CT. The Iowa State women’s team will run for the team-title approximately at 12:15 p.m. CT.