By TOM ZEBOLD
USF Senior Writer
TAMPA - The USF track and field, and cross country programs recently held their 2011-12 awards banquet and there was a lot to celebrate.
USF gave out a ton of superlatives during an event that took place at the newly renovated Sun Dome. The Bulls recognized five USTFCCCA Academic All-Americans, two All-Americans, two Olympic Trials qualifiers, five Big East individual champions and many more school record-breakers.
Here is a look at the award recipients:
Outstanding female track athlete of the year: Shaniel Chambers (set the USF 400m indoor record; ran a leg of the USF record-setting 4x400m indoor relay and posted the second-fastest outdoor 400m time in program history while earning All-Big East honors in the quarter mile at both the indoor and outdoor conference championships; qualified for the NCAA East Preliminary).
Outstanding male track athlete of the year: David Aristil (member of the school record-breaking 4x400 meter relay team; also broke his own school record in the 400m hurdles; became USF's highest Big East Championship point scorer by earning three silver medals during outdoors season; qualified for the NCAA Championships where he earned All-American honors for the third time in the 400m hurdles; represented the Bulls at the U.S. Olympic Trials).
Outstanding female field athletes of the year: Marqueshia Stallworth (won a Big East title; earned two All-Big East honors; recorded second-best triple jump in the program's indoor and outdoor history; clared 41 feet eight times and made NCAA East Preliminary rounds; won her third Big East triple jump crown during indoors and placed third at outdoors; posted USF's second-best mark all-time at Texas Relays with a leap of 41-10). Monique Williams (won the Big East indoor long jump title and finished second in the triple jump to earn All-Big honors; finished in the top five in the long jump in all but one meet during the indoor season and her leap of 20-1.5 is the second-best in USF history; her outdoor mark of 19-8.25 is the third-best in USF history; finished fourth in the triple jump and sixth in the long jump at Big East outdoors).
Outstanding male field athlete of the year: Jared Thomas (broke two school records in 2012; earned his first Big East title as a Bull; received All-Big East honors at outdoors by finishing second in the discus; qualified for NCAA Outdoors and became the first USF male thrower to score and earned All-American honors by placing fifth; made U.S. Olympic Trials and represented the U.S. at the NACAC Championships in Mexico).
Outstanding male freshmen athletes of the year: Drew Volz (finished third at Big East Indoors and earned all-conference honors; finished in the top five at the outdoor conference meet and posted the third-best mark in school history in the pole vault before advancing to the NCAA East Preliminary). Chase Meyers (ranks seventh in the USF record books in the high jump event; earned two All-Big East honors by finishing second at outdoors and third at indoors).
Outstanding female cross country athlete of the year: Allie Prendergast (USF's top runner throughout the season; finished off her senior year by posting USF's best-ever finish at the Big East meet and the highest program mark at the NCAA South Regional since 2004; earned All-South Region honors by finishing 17th and placed 22nd at the Big East meet; won two meets, finished in the top five at the UF meet, top 10 at UVA and top 20 at Louisville).
Outstanding male cross country athlete of the year: Connor Bauer (top USF runner at every meet; finished in the top 20 at two meets and set his personal 8k best at the Big East meet with a time of 25:45).
Most improved male track athlete: Reshaw Exilien (was a member of the USF school record 4x400m relay team; earned All-Big East honors in the 200m and 400m during the outdoors season; qualified for the NCAA East Preliminary for the first time and ran a personal best of 46.74 in the 400m that ranks him second at USF all-time).
Most improved female track athlete: Yasmin Smith (improved personal bests twice; her times of 2:06.78 in the 800 and 4:23.86 in the 1,500 rank her second all-time at USF in both events; qualified for the NCAA East Preliminary in the 800 for the first time).
Most improved male field athlete: Neamen Wise (owns three school records; earned his first Big East individual title; earned a silver medal in the heptathlon with a lifetime-best 5,409 points at Big East Indoors; finished in the top 12 at the NCAA East Preliminary and earned his first trip to NCAA Outdoors; added more than a foot to his personal best in the long jump with a leap of 26 feet).
Most improved female athletes: Nicole Smith (earned All-Big East honors by placing second at Big East Outdoors; posted a personal best of 12-3.5 in the pole vault in 2011; improved her top long jump mark to 12-9.5 in 2012 to get into fourth all-time at USF; competed at the NCAA East Preliminary). Atasha Warren (posted personal bests in three different events in 2012 and all three ranked in USF's all-time top five; became the first USF female athlete to score in three individual events at the Big East meet; qualified to compete in two events and the NCAA East Preliminary; improved her throw to 52 feet in the shot put, 178 feet in the hammer and 160 feet in the discus).
Outstanding academic freshman male representative: Derek Messmore (earned a 3.91 GPA; named to the Big East academic honor roll).
Outstanding academic freshman female representative: Mallory John son (earned a 4.0 GPA; named to the Big East academic honor roll).
Outstanding academic senior male representative, Big East scholar: Phillip Wise (3.67 GPA; Big East academic honor roll all four years).
Outstanding academic senior female representative, Big East scholar: Shaniel Chambers (3.93 GPA; USTFCCCA Academic All-American; Big East academic honor roll all four years).
All-Americans: David Aristil (first team, 400m hurdles); Jared Thomas (first team, discus)
USTFCCCA Academic All-Americans (had one of the top 96 indoor marks in the nation and or qualified for the NCAA East Preliminary, and had cumulative GPA of 3.25 or higher): Shaniel Chambers, Yasmin Smith, Allie Prendergast, Rachael James, Nicole Smith.
Olympic Trial Qualifiers: David Aristil (400m hurdles), Jared Thomas (discus).
All-Big East performers: Indoor (men) - Jared Thomas (first place, weight throw); Lindsey Lamar (first place, 60); Kayvon Webster (second place, 60); Neamen Wise (second place, heptathlon); Pascal Orelus (third place, 400); Chase Meyers (third place, high jump); Drew Volz (third place, pole vault). Indoor (women) - Monique Williams (first place, long jump; second place, triple jump); Marqueshia Stallworth (first place, triple jump); Rachael James (third place, 400; second place, 4x400m relay); Shaniel Chambers (third place, 500; seocn place 4x400m relay); Melissa Teape (second place, 4x400m relay); Christine Poole-Trice (second place, 4x400m relay); Rachel Etienne (third place, pentathlon).
Outdoor (men) - Neamen Wise (first place, long jump); Jared Thomas (second place, discus); David Aristil (second place, 100m hurdles, 400m hurdles, 4x400m relay); Pascal Orelus (second place, 400m, 4x400m relay); Reshaw Exilien (second place 200, 4x400m relay); Shane Lewis (second place, triple jump); Wyatt Metzger (second place, pole vault). Outdoor (women) - Rachael James (second place, 400m); Nicole Smith (second place, pole vault); Rachel Etienne (second place, heptathlon); Marqueshia Stallworth (third place, triple jump).
Big East champions: Indoor (men) - Jared Thomas, weight throw; Lindsey Lamar, 60. Indoor (women) - Monique Williams, long jump; Marqueshia Stallworth, triple jump. Outdoor (men) - Neamen Wise, long jump.
Indoor 60 - Lindsey Lamar, 6.74, Big East Championships
Indoor 400 - Pascal Orelus, 47.25, Big East Championships
Outdoor 400 - David Aristil, 49.54, NCAA East Preliminary
Outdoor 4x400 - David Aristil, Pascal Orelus, Franklin Mosely, Reshaw Exilien, 3:07.49, NCAA East Preliminary
Indoor pole vault - Drew Volz, 17-0.75, New Balance Invitational
Indoor heptathlon - Neamen Wise, 5,409, Big East Championships
Outdoor long jump - Neamen Wise, 26-0, Big East Championships
Indoor weight throw - Jared Thomas, 64', Big East Championships
Outdoor discus - Jared Thomas, 201', Cardinal Twilight
Indoor 400 - Rachael James, 55.04, Big East Championships
Indoor 500 - Shaniel Chambers, 1:11.64, Big East Championships
Outdoor 800 - Shaniel Chambers, 2:06.19, FSU Relays
Indoor 4x400m relay - Melissa Teape, Rachael James, Shaniel Chambers, Christine Poole-Trice, 3:40.92, Big East Championships
Indoor distance medley relay - Kelli Williams, Rachael James, 11:36.37, Big East Championships
Outdoor 4x800 meter relay - Yasmin Smith, Nicole Rozario, Allie Prendergast, Kelli Williams, 8:53.20, Big East Championships
Outdoor heptathlon - Rachel Etienne, 5,187, Big East Championships