Two Hope tracksters achieved All-America status
at the NCAA Division III track and field championship in Berea,
Ohio. Sophomore Emily Sowers of Grand Rapids (GR Christian HS)
finished fifth in the discus while junior Jenny Ernst of
Westerville, Ohio (Westerville South HS) was seventh in the
10,000 meter run.
With six points, Hope finished 38th among 70 teams that
scored in the meet. MIAA champion Calvin was fourth in the
women's meet highlighted by two national championship
This is the second time that Hope has had two All-Americans
in the same year at the women's national championships. In 1987
Karen Hoekstra was sixth in the javelin and Julie Darling sixth
in the 400-meter hurdles. In 1993, Marcia Vandersall was an
All-American in two events (5,000 and 10,000).
Competing at nationals for the second consecutive year,
Sowers had a throw of 142 feet, 1 inch in the finals. She
advanced to the finals after throwing 140 feet, 11 inches in a
field of 21 competitors in the qualifying round. The national
champion is Tabitha Fendrick of Wisc.-Whitewater with a throw of
149 feet, 1 inch.
Sowers is the first Hope athlete (male or female) to achieve
All-America distinction in the discus. She holds the Hope
(145-7) and MIAA (145-7) discus records and is a two-time
all-conference trackster. As a freshman she finished 15th at
Seeded 14th in a field of 19 runners, Ernst was in the
middle of the pack most of the marathon 10,000-meter race until
putting on a surge in the final laps to crack the top ten and
gain All-America distinction by finishing seventh.
Her time of 36:23.70 is a Hope College record. The previous
mark was 36:31.3 by Marcia VanderSall at nationals in 1993. The
race was won by freshman Cheryl Smith of Cortland State, N.Y.
Ernst became the third Hope runner to achieve All-America
status in the 10,000 meter run. Marcia Vandersall finished sixth
at nationals in both 1991 and 1993.
Later in the meet, Ernst finished 15th in a field of 21
runners in the 5,000-meter run (18:09.36).
Hope's NCAA Track & Field All Americans
1974 Jim Wildgen, High Jump, sixth
1976 Jim Wildgen, High Jump, fourth
1985 Rob Appell, High Jump, first
1987 Karen Hoekstra, Javelin, sixth
1987 Julie Darling, 400 Hurdles, sixth
1987 Todd Rose, Javelin, fifth
1987 Todd Rose, Decathlon, fourth
1988 Todd Rose, Decathlon, second
1989 Mary Busscher, Shot Put, second
1991 Marcia Vandersall, 10,000 Meters, sixth
1992 Marcia Vandersall, 5,000 Meters, sixth
1992 Mark Bonnell, Pole Vault, third
1993 Marcia Vandersall, 5,000 Meters, sixth
1993 Marcia Vandersall, 10,000 Meters, sixth
1993 Mark Bonnell, Pole Vault, seventh
1995 Kelly Etheridge, Heptathlon, fifth
1997 Dan Bannink, 5,000 Meters, eighth
1999 Jennifer Ernst, 10,000 Meters, seventh
1999 Emily Sowers, Discus, fifth