Augustana athletes from four teams will contend for national championships this month at competitions around the country.
The Augustana men's track & field team will be represented in three events at the NCAA DIII Indoor Track & Field Championships March 8-9 in Boston, Mass. This is 2006 graduate Jake Shaver’s first national competition as the head coach of his alma mater.
Michael Johnson ’19 from Owensboro, Ky., will run the 60 meter dash. Joining him will be Cody Wheeler ’19 from East Moline, Ill., competing in the weight throw, and Ryan Thornton ’21 from Mapleton, Ill., in the high jump. (Update: Thornton placed fourth in the high jump; Johnson 19th in the 60; and Wheeler 14th in the weight throw.)
Three members of the women's track & field team also will travel to Boston for the NCAA DIII Indoor Track & Field Championships. Hannah Willhite ’20 from Rock Island, Ill., will run the 60 meter and 200 meter dash. Katie Eastburn ’20 from Geneseo, Ill., will join Willhite in the 200 meter, in addition to the 400 meter dash. Mackenzie Butcher ’19 from Colorado Springs, Colo., will represent the Blue & Gold in the pole vault. (Update: Eastburn placed fourth in the nation in both the 200 and 400; Willhite 10th in the 200 and 15th in the 60; and Butcher 18th in the pole vault.)
Wrestler Adarios Jones '20 from Moline, Ill., finished third in the nation in the 285-pound competition in 2017. He’s looking for the title this year when he takes his 24-0 record to the NCAA DIII Wrestling Championships March 8-9 in Roanoke, Va. (Update: Jones took second in the nation.)
On March 21-23, Jared Ekberg ’19, from Rockford, Ill., will compete in three events at the NCAA DIII Swimming Championships in Greensboro, N.C. A school record-holder in five individual events and as part of four relays, Ekberg will swim the 100 butterfly, 100 backstroke and 100 freestyle at the national meet.