By Nathan Hutchinson
Special to the Register
MADISON COUNTY — Nijhuis named All-Academic Cross Country
Eastern Kentucky University sophomore Thijs Nijhuis has been named to the 2012 U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) All-Academic Cross Country Team.
Nijhuis, a native of Sparkaer, Viborg, Denmark, is one of only 67 Division I male student-athletes and the only Ohio Valley Conference student-athlete, male or female, to earn the honor.
To qualify for the USTFCCCA All-Academic Cross Country Team, student-athletes must have compiled a cumulative grade point average of 3.25 and have either earned USTFCCCA All-America status or finished in their respective region’s top 15 (or top 10 percent) in 2012.
Nijhuis has maintained a 3.60 GPA while working towards a degree in biology. He earned All-Southeast Region honors after finishing 11th at the NCAA Southeast Region Championships with a 10K time of 30:08.32. His performance helped lead the nationally-ranked Colonels to the NCAA Championships for the second consecutive season.
The EKU men’s and women’s cross country teams were also both named Division I All-Academic Teams by the USTFCCCA.
To qualify as a USTFCCCA All-Academic Cross Country Team, the team must have had a cumulative team GPA of 3.00 or better and have started at least five runners at their respective NCAA region championship.
The EKU men’s team compiled a cumulative GPA of 3.24, while the EKU women posted a cumulative GPA of 3.52.
Nationally, the USTFCCCA honored 145 men's teams and 200 women's teams at the Division I level.
Eason named OVC Female Athlete of OVC Indoor Championships
Eastern Kentucky University sophomore Ann Eason has been named the Ohio Valley Conference Female Athlete of the Indoor Track and Field Championships, the league office announced on Tuesday.
Eason brought home three gold medals over the weekend. The Lexington native served as the anchor on EKU’s winning distance medley relay team on Friday night, combining with teammates Erica Wesstrom, Julie Mathisen and Tashuana Yapchung to run away from the field with a time of 12:00.38. On Saturday, Eason outpaced the field in the mile with a time of 4:52.39 and then capped her weekend by winning the 3,000 meters in 9:53.83.
Eason, the 2012 OVC Female Cross Country Runner of the Year, has now won five OVC track titles in her young career.
She is the second EKU runner to be named the female MVP of the indoor championships, as former Colonel All-American Lydia Kosgei earned the honor last winter.
Eason will attempt to qualify for the NCAA Indoor Championships in the 3,000 meters this weekend at the Notre Dame Alex Wilson Invitational.
EKU falls to Kentucky, 4-0
Kentucky won the top three singles matches in straight sets on the way to a 4-0 victory over the Eastern Kentucky University women’s tennis team Tuesday morning in the Boone Tennis Complex.
The Wildcats move to 7-2 with the win, while the Colonels fall to 5-4.
Sophomore Melissa Gerritsen was up a set at No. 4 singles when the team outcome was decided.
EKU will next play its final home indoor match of the winter this Friday against Lindsey Wilson. Match time is set for 10 a.m.
EKU women’s golf takes eighth
The Eastern Kentucky University women’s golf team opened its spring schedule by placing eighth at the 11th Annual USA Women’s Invitational hosted by South Alabama.
With a two-round total of 641, EKU finished five shots behind seventh-place Jacksonville State (636) and 14 shots in front of ninth-place Alabama-Birmingham (655). Louisiana-Monroe (616) captured the title by one shot over South Alabama (617).
The event was contested at the par-72, 6,071-yard Azalea City Golf Club.
Freshmen Anna Gleixner and Becky Sharpe led the Colonels. Both finished with 36-hole totals of 159. Gleixner shot rounds of 77 and 82. Sharpe carded rounds of 80 and 79. The duo tied for 21st overall.
Senior April Emerson (160) tied for 27th.
The Colonels will return to action on March 4 at the Time Warner Racer Classic hosted by Murray State.