Year in Review 2016 Bearcats track & field
The 2016 indoor and outdoor seasons will go down as one of the best in program history. The season was filled with numerous memorable moments from individual records and All-America honors to the women winning their first conference championship. With the 2016 season concluded, we look back on the success the Bearcats had:
During the 2016 indoor and outdoor seasons, five different Bearcats (four women, one man) combined to collect eight total All-America honors.
Blaut earned a pair of USTFCCCA All-America accolades in the high jump during her sophomore campaign, garnering Second Team placement indoors and First Team honors outdoors. Blaut will be one of the top returning high jumpers in the conference next year, looking to continue the program's hold on the event.
Echikunwoke put up remarkable numbers throughout the year, breaking and resetting the school record in the weight throw (indoor) and hammer throw (outdoor) five times each. On the national level, she earned USTFCCCA All-America Firest Team honors in both events.
In her final season with the Bearcats, Hurd posted two more All-America finishes as the NCAA Championships, earning USTFCCCA All-America First Team in the indoor high jump before garnering Second Team outdoors. With her four total honors, she is now the most decorated Bearcat in women's track & field history.
Valles, the lone man to reach the NCAA Championships in 2016, collected the third USTFCCCA All-America honor of his career as the sophomore earned First Team honors in the indoor pole vault. The three-time honoree also is a four-time conference champion and has carried a 4.0 GPA throughout the season.
Woodall's career with Cincinnati came to a close in Oregon where she was 12th nationally in the 400m dash to earn USTFCCCA All-America Second Team honors, the first of her career. Woodall leaves UC as one of the fastest to ever represent the Bearcats, holding school records in six individual sprints and as a member of two relay teams.
Abrahamsson swept the horizontal jumps at the American Indoor Championships, first winning the long jump before capturing the triple jump one day later.
With his win, Acera not only collected the first conference crown of this career, but also gave UC a sweep of the long jump, one of two events the Bearcats swept.
Brooks bounced back from an injury indoors to come out on top at the American Outdoor Championships where he won his first conference title in the 400m dash.
One of three Bearcats to win multiple titles in 2016, Echikunwoke took gold in similar events as she first won the indoor weight throw before capturing the outdoor hammer throw. She is the only Bearcat to ever sweep those events in the same year.
Since the American Athletic Conference came about three years ago, only one woman's name has ever been called as champion of the high jump as 2016 marked the third year in a row Hurd was champion. Her indoor title was the fourth of her career (2015 outdoor).
Peaking at the right time, Lee was on fire at the conference meet, breaking the school record twice on her way to the 100m hurdles crown, the first of the senior's career. She also set the school record in the 400m hurdles in the same meet.
JP won the second conference title of his career (2014 outdoor hammer) as he threw a school record to not only win the indoor weight throw, but also give UC the sweep of the event (Echikunwoke won the women's title).
The Spainard continued to rule the pole vault in the American Athletic Conference as the sophomore swept the indoor and outdoor titles for the second year in a row. He is only the second Bearcat to repeat as the outdoor champion and one of two to sweep both events.
The sophomore twice broke the indoor triple jump record and added the top mark in the outdoor triple jump later in the season. She also broke the outdoor long jump record, but only had the mark for one week before teammate Kellsa Mbah took over.
Bloom had a solid season, especially in the high jump, an event he used to help him to a third-place showing in the decathlon at the conference meet. Bloom cleared 2.07m to break the indoor heptathlon record he set one year earlier.
In what nearly became a weekly occurance, Echikunwoke continued to update the record books as she broke once and then reset four more times the top mark in both the indoor weight throw and the outdoor hammer throw. In the hammer alone, she improved her best from 2015 by over 40' this year.
The only man to break a school record more than once in the season, Province reset the standard in the indoor weight throw three times, including a toss of 19.78m (64' 10.75") to win the American Athletic Conference title in his final collegiate indoor meet.
Similar to Province, Tudor saved his best for last as the junior reset his record in the indoor shot put, tossing the ball to 18.19m (59' 8.25") to take runner-up honors at the conference's indoor championship event.
Woodall reset records in both the indoor and outdoor 200m and tied the mark in the outdoor 100m to give her six total individual UC records. She also helped the indoor 4x400m and outdoor 4x100m relays to school records.
2016 School Record Breakers - Women:
Abrahamsson, Rebecka - Triple Jump (in & out)
Anton, Alexis - 4x1500m (out), Distance Medley (out)
Bisiolu, Haisha (freshman record) - 100m (out), 200m (out), 4x100m (in)
Corea, Tes - 4x1500m (out)
Echikunwoke, Annette - Weight (in), Hammer (out)
Gesicki, Deanna - 4x100m (out), Distance Medley (out)
Grant, Jada - 4x400m (in)
Hentz, Sammy - Distance Medley (out)
Lee, Javette - 100m Hurdles (out), 400m Hurdles (out), 4x100m (out), 4x400m (in)
Mbah, Kellsa - Long Jump (out)
Robinson, Bryana - 4x400m (in)
Robinson, Vanessa (freshman record) - 3,000m Steeple (out), 4x1500m (out)
Westerheide, Meg - 4x1500m (out), Distance Medley (out)
Woodall, Kenya - 100m Dash (out), 200m Dash (in & out), 4x100m (out), 4x400m (in)
2016 School Record Breakers - Men:
Alexander, Nathan - 4x400m (out)
Bloom, Alex - High Jump (indoor heptathlon)
Brooks, Jimmy - 4x400m (out)
Collins, Seamus - 4x1500m (out)
Hart, Jarrod - 4x1500m (out)
Huben, Dan - 4x1500m (out)
Province, Josh - Weight Throw (in)
Silver, Ian - 4x1500m (out)
Smith, Nathan - 4x400m (out)
Tudor, Macklin - Shot Put (in)
Witcher, Halen - 4x400m (out)
Head Coach Susan Seaton and her staff saw their student-athletes compete well in 2016 with five individuals earning All-America honors; 25 different Bearcats having a hand in breaking a school record and eight individuals winning a conference title... of this led to the first conference team title in women's program history. For all the success their student-athletes enjoyed, the conference coaches voted the 2016 UC staff as the Women's Coaching Staff of the Year.
During the 2015-16 academic year, six men and seven women recorded at least one semester with a perfect 4.0 GPA, including two men and two women that were pefect in both the Fall 2015 and Spring 2016 report. The four Bearcats that were named TopCats in both semesters include:
The remaining Bearcats that posted a 4.0 GPA include Jacob Franklin, Josh Province, Joe Ratterman & Ben Wollenslegel for the men and women's team members Lauren Goodwin, Grace O'Donnell, Anne Pace, Ashleigh Pickens and Vanessa Robinson.
Overall as a team, the men's program had the highest team GPA of any athletics team on campus in both semesters, including a 3.571 GPA in the fall. They also ranked among the Top 10% in the NCAA among all programs across the nation. The women also were solid in the classroom as they posted the highest GPA (3.60) in the department (tied with soccer) among women's programs in the spring.