EAST LANSING, Mich. â€“ Sophomore thrower Beth Rohl and assistant coach John Newell of the Michigan State track & field team have earned Great Lakes Region honors, as announced by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) on Monday, May 6. Rohl was named as the USTFCCCAâ€™s Great Lakes Field Athlete of the Year, while Newell was tabbed as the Assistant Coach of the Year.
Rohl becomes the programâ€™s first Great Lakes Region Field Athlete of the Year after qualifying for her second-straight NCAA finals in both the hammer throw and discus throw. A native of New Buffalo, Mich., Rohl was the Big Ten Champion in both the discus and hammer, earning the conferenceâ€™s Athlete of the Year and of the Championships for her efforts. Rohl was the first Spartan in school history to ever be named Big Ten Athlete of the Year or Big Ten Athlete of the Championships in either field or track.
Rohl enters Des Moines as the seventh-best discus thrower in the field this season with a program-best mark of 55.94m. Her school-record mark of 60.28m in the hammer throw is the 17th best toss in the nation this season.
Like Rohl, Newell is the first assistant coach in program history to be named Great Lakes Region Assistant Coach of the Year. At the Big Ten Championships, Newellâ€™s throwers won two individual titles, set two school records, broke two facility records and earned the first dual honor of Big Ten Athlete of the Year and Athlete of the Championships. In his fourth year with the Spartans, Newell had four East Preliminary qualifiers and had three advance to the NCAA Championships.