The UW Oshkosh women’s track and field team made history March 8 and 9 with a win at the NCAA Division III Indoor Track and Field championship in Naperville, Ill.
Christy Cazzola, a senior from Kaukana, contributed to three of UW Oshkosh’s five victories. Cazzola was later named National Athlete of the Year by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association.
At the championship, UW Oshkosh easily took the title with 56 points. Illinois College placed second with 32, followed by UW-La Crosse third with 27, Wartburg College (Iowa) fourth with 25 and Monmouth College (Ill.) fifth with 24.
This is the Titans’ eighth indoor crown and the school’s 45th national title overall.
UW Oshkosh broke the Division III all-time record when Cazzola, Stephanie Jahn (a junior from Deerfield), McKenzie Kelly (a senior from New Richmond) and Kylee Verhasselt (a sophomore from Freedom) clocked a 11:32.24 in the distance medley relay. Middlebury College (Vt.) placed second at 11:34.51.
Breanna Strupp (a senior from Slinger) was the final champion. After finishing fourth in the shot put last season, Strupp posted a 51-6.25 to earn first place.
Pete Delzer, a senior from Oconto Falls, won his second weight throw title.
UW-La Crosse earned the team crown with 74 points, while the Titans tallied 40 for second. UW-Eau Claire listed third with 37, followed by UW-Whitewater fourth with 35 and Bates College (Maine) fifth with 23. UW Oshkosh placed in the top-four for the eighth straight season.
Delzer was one of four Titans to grab multiple All-America awards. The Titans had three men score in the weight throw, as Delzer grabbed first place with a school-record mark of 67-9.5. Nick Baatz (a senior from Brownsville) then tossed a 62-6.5 for fifth and Lewis Prior (a senior from Coleman) posted a 61-10.5 for sixth. Delzer also won this event in 2011 and placed second last year.
In the shot put, Delzer finished fourth with a distance of 56-9.25. Nick Grosskopf (senior from Weston) followed with a 56-4 for sixth and Prior a 56-3.25 for seventh. Baatz scored his third straight All-America showing in the event, grabbing the eighth position at 56-3.
Donald Klitz (a senior from Markesan) contributed seven points to UW Oshkosh’s team score by placing fourth in the triple jump at 48-11.75 and seventh in the high jump at 6-8.25. John McCann (a junior from Elroy) also high-jumped 6-8.25 while earning sixth place.
In the 1,600-meter relay, UW-Oshkosh finished seventh. John Cejka (a senior from Wausau), Mike Servais (a freshman from New Franken), Corey Wilch (a junior from Waukesha) and Reid Zanoya (a sophomore from Monticello) compiled a time of 3:18.03.
The outdoor track and field season begins at Titan Stadium on March 30.