Westmont Magazine Eight New All-Americans
In the best finish ever, Westmont ended the 1998-99 year in a tie for seventh place in the National Associ-ation of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Sears Directors’ Cup competition. This is the fourth year in a row Westmont has placed in the top 15 schools in the Sears Cup standings.
NAIA members, which include nearly 350 schools, win points for their finishes in up to 12 sports: six for men and six for women. Westmont collected 310 points to tie with the University of Findlay of Ohio and Southern Nazarene University of Oklahoma.
Golden State Athletic Conference rival Azusa Pacific came in second with 500 points, behind top finisher Simon Frasier from British Columbia, which amassed 790 points.
Nine of Westmont’s 12 athletic teams earned points this year, including an NAIA Final Four appearance by the men’s basketball team and a fifth-place finish by the women’s cross country squad. Westmont placed 13th in 1997 and 10th in 1996.
The National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics administers the award, which is sponsored by Sears, Roebuck, and Co.
For more information about the Sears Directors’ Cup, check the Web site at www.nacda.com.
Senior Brian Kettler ended his college sports career by earning second-team NAIA All-American honors at the 1999 NAIA Championships. Brian won three matches at the national tournament to make it to the round of 32.
The team ended up in 19th place in the national tournament.
Senior Kara Gochnour earned second-team All-American honors for the second straight season at the NAIA Championships. She advanced through three rounds of singles play, finishing in the round of 32.
She was also honored with the Arthur Ashe Leadership-Sportsmanship Award for NAIA women.
Kara and her doubles partner, Brittany McMillan, made it to the third round of doubles play.
The team ended 14th in the NAIA. The women’s tennis program has finished in the top 15 of the NAIA in seven of the past eight years.
Men’s Track and Field
Six members of the men’s track and field team competed in the NAIA national championships. The 4 x 800 relay squad, made up of sophomores Dusty Hamlin and Mark Blomberg and first-year students
Tim Meador and Matthew Torres, did not qualify for the finals. Earlier, the team won the GSAC title.
Junior Danny Sanchez competed in the 3,000-meter steeplechase and first-year student George
Wheeler placed 18th in the javelin throw with a mark of 175-9.
Women’s Track and Field
In one of the most successful national meets in school history, the women’s track and field team placed 24th overall in the NAIA national championships and produced six All-Americans.
Sophomore Rebekah Reynolds took fifth place in the shot put, and first-year student Allison Knode tied for sixth place in the pole vault.
The 4 x 800 relay team placed third, earning all four members of the team All-American honors. The foursome, first-year students Becca Baisch and Christa Fitzgerald, sophomore Hannah Miller, and senior Annaka Gustafson, ran 9:12.40, shattering Westmont’s previous record by more than 10 seconds.
Gustafson also finished eighth in the 1,500-meter run.
Web Site Wins
The Westmont athletic Web site has won first place among NAIA schools in a recent competition. Sports Information Director Jeff Raymond designed the site and keeps it updated. Four of five judges awarded the site first place out of 49 entries.