Record-setting efforts helped St. Ambrose sweep the Midwest Collegiate Conference indoor men’s and women’s track and field titles awarded this weekend at Sterling, Ill. The Fighting Bees topped Grand View by 171/2 points to win the men’s championship, while the Queen Bees owned a 641/2-point advantage over runner-up Mount Mercy.
St. Ambrose senior John Darmody was named the MCC men’s track athlete of the year after winning first place in the 800- and 3,000-meter runs and the 1-mile run and finishing third in the 600. Darmody, also named Monday as the conference’s athlete of the week in the sport, anchored a conference record-setting 3,200 relay to a first-place finish. The Bees also established a new league record in winning the distance medley relay.
The Queen Bees’ Jaclyn Scavuzzo shared the MCC women’s field athlete of the year award after setting an MCC record in the pole vault with an effort of 10 feet, 91/2 inches.
Mount Mercy’s Jenna Higgins, a former North Scott prep from Eldridge, was named the MCC women’s indoor track athlete of the year after winning the 55- and 200-meter dashes and finishing third in the 400 and 55 hurdles.
Another former Quad-City high school athlete, Ragan Davis, also had a highly successful meet for Grand View. The Davenport Assumption alum won the 400, was part of the winning 1,600 relay, was second in the 200 and placed fifth in the 55.
St. Ambrose coach Dan Tomlin was selected as the men’s and women’s coach of the year in the conference.
Colby returns to Illini staff
Former Illinois player and assistant coach Greg Colby will return to the Fighting Illini staff as the defensive line coach.
Colby, who spent the past five seasons as the head coach at Division II Millersville (Pa.), was named Monday to replace Keith Gilmore, who left for a job on the staff at North Carolina.
A Danville, Ill., native, Colby is no stranger to the Big Ten. He coached linebackers and special teams at Illinois from 1988-95, worked as the defensive line and outside linebackers coach at Michigan State from 1995-97 and was the defensive coordinator at Northwestern from 2002-07.
Azinger wins conference honor
Former Central DeWitt athlete Dylan Azinger has been named the Iowa Conference wrestler of the week.
Azinger, a senior at Wartburg College, scored a takedown with 7 seconds remaining in the third period to record a 6-4 victory over No. 10 Ethan Ball in the 174-pound match of the Knights’
33-3 Iowa Conference dual championship win over Coe.