PAINESVILLE, OHIO –Lake Erie College men's track and field team came away with three All-American honors on Saturday (March 12) giving them a total of four at the 2011 NCAA Division II Indoor Track and Field Championships in Albuquerque, N.M.
"It was amazing for our program to come home with four All-American honors and is a testament to how hard these kids work," said head coach Bryan Harmon. "This was a great way to cap and outstanding indoor season, and an amazing experience for the first timers (to nationals) and I know they are excited to continue this momentum into the outdoor season."
Sophomore Chris Burrows (Trotwood, Ohio/Trotwood Madison) led the way with two All-American awards, including a third-place finish in the 200-meter dash with a school-record time of 21.07 seconds. Earlier, he placed sixth in the 400-meters in 47.64 seconds, also a school-record.
"Chris ran two great races on Friday and came back with even better performances on Saturday," Harmon said. "He has proven himself to be among the national elite in the 200, both indoors and out, and also shown he's very strong in the 400, plus he did well in the shorter sprints throughout the year."
The performance runs his career All-American total to three after having earned those honors at the 2010 Outdoor National Championships in Charlotte, N.C. in the 200.
Classmate Isaac Snyder (Salesville, Ohio/Buckeye Trail), who entered the day in eighth place through four events in the heptathlon, was unable to gain any ground in the multi-events and finished with 4,943 points. He broke his own school record for points in the event and joined his twin brother Ethan Snyder (Salesville, Ohio/Buckeye Trail) as All-Americans. Ethan was an outdoor All-American in 2010 in the 400-meter hurdles.
"Competing in seven events over two days is not easy, but Isaac is one of the hardest workers I've ever seen," said Harmon. "And even though he had a great Championships, scoring his highest point total ever and earned All-American honors, I know he won't be satisfied with that and will strive to improve and come back next year and do even better."
The two sophomores joined freshman high jumper Jamil Dudley (Massillon, Ohio/Massillon), who placed third on Friday night to earn the school's first indoor All-American honor by clearing 7' ½".
"For Jamil to come out as a freshman and finish in the top three nationally shows the kind of natural ability he has," said Harmon. "There's a lot of pressure at this time of year and I thought he handled it okay. I expect him to build on this and have a great outdoor season and be a regular at the national level for years to come."
Sophomore Eric Klucar (Medina, Ohio/Highland) was the fourth member of the Strom to qualify for the NCAA Championships, but was hampered by a bad back and did not register a clear in the pole vault on Saturday.
As a team, Lake Erie's 16 team points ranked tied for 16th out of 45 squads that scored points at the meet.
"I think last year at the outdoor championships, we might have made a blip on the national radar," Harmon added. "But now after this weekend, I think people in this sport are aware of the Storm and the talent we have and the program we are building."