TERRE HAUTE —
Liz Evans does not believe in jinxes.
So she doesn’t mind admitting she would like to become the first six-time national champion in the history of Rose-Hulman athletics.
A runner-up in the women’s high jump in the NCAA Divison III indoor and outdoor championships as a freshman in 2010, Evans cleared 5 feet, 7 3/4 inches to earn first place in the 2011 indoor nationals March 12 at Columbus, Ohio.
That’s No. 1.
“I jumped consistently the entire year,” Evans told the Tribune-Star during the Rose-Hulman Early Bird Invitational outdoor meet Saturday. “So for me, a 5-7 3/4 is kinda what I expected, although I wanted to go higher.”
The Rose sophomore missed three attempts at 5-8 3/4 — barely knocking the bar over with her foot on the second try at that height — she said.
Now Evans must turn her attention to the future, where there’s a possibility of five more Division III national titles — including the 2011 outdoors May 26-28 at Delaware, Ohio.
“For the next five times, yes, I want to win [national championships],” she said without hesitation.
Previous Rose-Hulman national champs were Chris Trapp (outdoor men’s javelin throw in 1984, 1985 and 1986) and Ryan Loftus (indoor men’s pole vault in 1997 and 1998) in track and field and Matt Smith (men’s 100-yard breaststroke) in swimming.
Rose assistant coach Matt Cole, who works with Evans regularly, prefers she take the “one day at a time, one meet at a time” approach.
He did say, however, that Evans can jump “as high as she wants to” as she gets older.
Asked what she can she do to improve over the next two-plus years, Cole replied: “Get stronger.”
“A lot more lifting [in the weightroom],” he explained. “I mean, she’s going to grow and she’s going to mature even more. She’s only a sophomore. She’s only 20. Here in the next couple years — if she stays with it, if she stays consistent in her training — she’ll be a young, fit lady.”
Evans and Cole think 5-10 is a realistic target for the 2011 outdoor season, which continues for the Engineers on Saturday with the Hanover Invitational.
“I do want to increase my height,” Evans noted. “I would like to see a 5-10, but I’d have to jump a 5-9 before then and a 5-8 before that.”
“The month of May is going to be a crucial month,” Cole emphasized. “That’s probably when we would see 5-10 … after a few good weeks of hitting the weights and staying consistent.”
Over the years, Evans has demonstrated a knack for making gradual improvements.
As a senior at North Knox in 2009, Evans tied for fifth in the girls high jump in the IHSAA state finals with a leap of 5-6. As a junior in 2008, she placed sixth with a 5-5.
“When I came here, I didn’t expect to be this good,” Evans acknowledged. “But I worked very hard … and it has paid off.”
Having competed in several field events and played soccer at North Knox, she’s more specialized now.
“Liz was a very good high school athlete,” Cole mentioned. “We knew her best event would be the high jump. So when she came here as a freshman, our goal was to let her focus on the high jump and we worked on improving her already-existing God-given talent in that event.
“She had an excellent freshman year. She gained a lot of confidence, both indoors and outdoors, and that confidence showed [in the recent indoor nationals]. This time, she was a different young lady. She had a lot of confidence. She knew she could perform and she went out and did it.”
Evans still likes to dabble in other events when possible, proving that Saturday by long-jumping a school-record 17-1 1/4 to place first and set a school record.
Oh yeah, she also high-jumped 5-5 to provisionally qualify for the outdoor nationals.
A double major in math and electrical engineering, there’s little doubt that Evans will be able to land a high-paying job when she graduates. But she might delay that for a while if her athletic career goes the way she hopes.
“I think it would be awesome to continue with high jump and, if I get good enough, try to get into the Olympics,” Evans said.
That would be an improbable development, considering the innocent way she discovered the sport seven years ago.
“It was toward the end of my seventh-grade year and the only reason I tried it was because my brother [Ben] jumped,” Evans recalled. “He was one of those cool eighth-graders and I thought, ‘Sweet, if he can jump, maybe I can.’ My first jump was at 4 feet and I cleared it with no problem.”
She added that even if she had missed 4 feet, she would have tried at least a few more times.
Who knows? That kind of determination might help Evans crash through the 5-10 barrier sooner rather than later.
“She is just so committed with the day-to-day training routine that her and Matt have developed over the past two years,” stressed Rose-Hulman head track coach Larry Cole, father of Matt Cole.
Rose sophomore seeking more national high-jump titles
TERRE HAUTE —
Liz Evans does not believe in jinxes.
Strong defensive effort keys RHIT victory
Rose-Hulman placed three players in double figures and relied on a strong defensive effort to top Millikin 64-55 in men’s college basketball action Monday night.
Metro: Indiana Hall of Fame lauds two Wabash Valley athletes
Two players from the Wabash Valley have been named members of the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame Silver Anniversary Team that will be honored in March. Tony McGee and Kenny Rowan are members of the honor team.
Despite Strickland’s 26, Rose men lose in basketball
Rose-Hulman rimmed out a potential game-tying 3-point shot in the final seconds, as Transylvania held on to top the Engineers 62-59 in Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference men’s basketball Saturday.
Following a Transylvania foul with 2.2 seconds remaining, Rose freshman Collin Wojcik rimmed out a shot that could have forced overtime. Tommy Sirkin grabbed the rebound to secure the Transylvania victory.
Senior Julian Strickland led all scorers with 26 points, including nine points in the final three minutes to get the Engineers within striking distance.
Freshman Belyea top scorer for Rose women
Defending Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference women’s basketball regular-season champion Transylvania showed its strength with an 85-42 victory over Rose-Hulman in the league opener Saturday.
Madisen Webb led four Pioneers in double figures with 18 points. Katelyn Smith added 16 points, Nicole Coffman scored 13 and Alex McKenzie contributed 11 points for a balanced Transylvania attack.
Young gun: Freshman Belyea leads Engineers to second straight victory over Saint Mary-of-the Woods
Freshman women’s college basketball players sparked Saint Mary-of-the-Woods and Rose-Hulman on Wednesday in Hulbert Arena. Playing her first major minutes of the season, Rose-Hulman guard Kristen Belyea was the clutch shooter for the Engineers. In the second half, Belyea knocked down 4 of 6 from the field and 2 of 3 from the 3-point arc to help the Engineers earn a second straight victory in the rivalry with a 74-54 decision.
Strickland leads RHIT men to win
Rose-Hulman opened its Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference men's basketball season with a 66-50 victory at Anderson University on Wednesday.
Metro: Boys county title games set for tonight
A pair of championship games in the Vigo County middle school boys basketball tournament will be played today in West Vigo High School’s main gym. At 6 p.m., Woodrow Wilson will take on Sarah Scott for the sixth-grade title. Then at about 7:30, Wilson and Honey Creek will tangle for the seventh-grade crown.
Red-hot Strickland leads Engineers past Wabash 77-68
Julian Strickland tied his career-high point total with 31 Monday night — his third consecutive 30-point game this season — as host Rose-Hulman downed Wabash 77-68 in Hulbert Arena.
Rose-Hulman women fall short to Marian
A clutch 3-pointer and free throws down the stretch sealed the home victory for Marian University in Saturday’s competitive 50-45 nonconference victory over the Rose-Hulman women’s basketball team.
Strickland pours in 30, but the Engineers fall in home opener
Carroll University withstood a last-minute challenge by Rose-Hulman to earn a 67-64 men’s basketball victory in the Engineers’ home opener Saturday afternoon in Hulbert Arena.
Rose men’s soccer ends best season ever in Sweet 16 loss
The best season in Rose-Hulman men’s soccer history came to an end Saturday night with a 3-0 loss to Franklin & Marshall in the Sweet Sixteen of the NCAA Division III tournament.
Strickland leads Rose over Chicago in men's basketball
Rose-Hulman senior Julian Strickland fired in a career-high 31 points to lead the Engineers past the University of Chicago 85-80 in men’s college basketball Saturday night.
Strickland finished 11 of 19 from the field and 8 of 10 from the free-throw line with eight rebounds and five assists to lead the performance. He previously scored 30 points in the 2012 Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference tournament title game victory over Transylvania that launched the Engineers into the NCAA tournament.
Rose's dream soccer season ends with 3-0 loss to Franklin & Marshall
The best season in Rose-Hulman men’s soccer history came to an end with a 3-0 loss to Franklin & Marshall in the Sweet Sixteen of the NCAA Division III tournament.
Franklin and Marshall standout Ben Beaver scored once in each half to provide the offense, and goalkeeper T.J. White recorded a shutout to lead the defensive effort for the Diplomats.
Rose-Hulman men's basketball to begin 20th season under Shaw
Armed with one of the top NCAA Division III players in the nation in senior Julian Strickland, the Rose-Hulman men’s basketball team will begin its 20th straight season under the guidance of coach Jim Shaw tonight at Washington (St. Louis) University.
Tipoff for the Lopata Classic first-round matchup is slated for 9 o’clock EST.
“They’re one of the top [Division III] teams in the country,” Shaw said of the Bears’ program commonly known as Wash. U. “They’re really good every year and they’ll be really good this year.”
Rose-Hulman’s Montgomery seeking All-American in Division III
Rose-Hulman has a cross country runner in the NCAA Division III championships for the sixth time in the history of the men’s or women’s programs.
Ryann-Rebecca Montgomery is the second woman to qualify for the Engineers. The Lafayette, La., native will race for All-America status Saturday at Hanover in the women’s 6K race.
Rose-Hulman's Hong honored by NCAA Division III
Rose-Hulman freshman Ellie Hong has been named the Collegeswimming.com NCAA Division III Women’s Swimmer of the Week.
In a dual meet against Franklin, she broke the school record in the 100 freestyle (54.18 seconds) by nearly a second and won the 100 backstroke in 59.13.
Rose-Hulman’s Smyser is still embracing clutch goal
When sophomore Mike Smyser guided the ball into the net during the opening minutes of the Rose-Hulman men’s soccer match against undefeated, NCAA Division III No. 1-ranked Ohio Wesleyan on Sunday in Delaware, Ohio, he had no idea it would be the only goal of a hard-fought match.
Rose soccer scores biggest win in its history, ousting No. 1 in Division III tourney
Mike Smyser scored in the first five minutes Sunday, and the Rose-Hulman defense took care of the rest as the Engineers upset top-ranked, unbeaten Ohio Wesleyan 1-0 in the second round of the NCAA Division III men’s soccer tournament.
METRO/PREP ROUNDUP: Rose-Hulman football seeks first conference title since 1988
Rose-Hulman looks to earn its first football conference championship since 1988 in Saturday’s Battle of the Borders Broadsword matchup at Earlham. Kickoff is at 1:30 p.m.
Metro roundup: Rose-Hulman men's soccer advances to title game
Rose-Hulman advanced to the championship game of the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference men’s soccer tournament with a 3-0 victory over Hanover College on Tuesday night.
The second-seeded FEngineers will host Transylvania University, who upset No. 1 seed Earlham College earlier Tuesday. Transylvania and Earlham played to a 1-1 draw, before Transylvania advanced with a 4-2 victory in penalty kicks.
No. 12 Franklin visits Rose in HCAC showdown
Missing one of its best players, Rose-Hulman’s football team will play host to NCAA Division III No. 12-ranked Franklin in a matchup of the last two undefeated teams in Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference action at 1:30 p.m. today at Cook Stadium.
Rose men’s basketball team 20th in preseason rankings
DIII News has ranked Rose-Hulman at No. 20 nationally in its preseason men’s basketball poll and senior Julian Strickland earned “Top 24” honors from the organization Wednesday.
Rose-Hulman adds six to its Athletic Hall of Fame
Matt Smith and Andrew Schipper hadn’t seen each other in about 10 years until they crossed paths Saturday.
This wasn’t a surprise meeting because they knew they were reuniting for a common reason.
Both 2003 Rose-Hulman graduates were among six new inductees going into the engineering institute’s Athletic Hall of Fame over the weekend.
Despite firing off 36 shots, Rose-Hulman and Woods soccer teams battle to 0-0 tie
There was good reason to believe the Rose-Hulman and Saint Mary-of-the-Woods women’s soccer teams were an even match before they took the field Tuesday afternoon.
The Engineers entered at 4-2-3 and the host Pomeroys were 3-3.
Well, after 110 minutes — 90 minutes of regulation play and two 10-minute overtimes — proof exists that the teams are truly equal.
They played to a scoreless tie.
Rose-Hulman pulls out homecoming victory with huge third quarter
In the first, second and fourth quarters of Saturday afternoon’s homecoming game at Cook Stadium, the Rose-Hulman offense played like the NFL’s Jacksonville Jaguars, frequently plodding through three-and-outs and fumbling away the football.
Thankfully for the Engineers and their enthusiastic supporters, the Rose offense more closely resembled the Denver Broncos in the third quarter, exploding for three touchdowns that were desperately needed to secure a 23-19 triumph over Defiance in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference opener for both squads.
Rose-Hulman women’s soccer shuts out Greenville
Rose-Hulman scored once in the first half and twice in the second to earn a 3-0 shutout victory over Greenville College in women's soccer action on Wednesday at the Intramural Field.
Senior Rachel Johnstone put the Engineers on the board in the 34th minute, on a breakaway goal started by an assist from junior Haley O’Neil.
Rose-Hulman football drops opener at Kalamazoo
Big plays in the second half proved to be too much to overcome for the Rose-Hulman football team, as the Engineers fell on the road to Kalamazoo 28-23 on Saturday at Angell Field.
Quarterback Ryan Landwehr led the Rose-Hulman offense, completing 19 of 34 passes for 167 yards and two touchdowns. He was also the Engineers’ top rusher, finishing with 62 yards and a touchdown on 12 carries.
Short move: New R-H coach didn’t even have to leave home to take ‘attractive deal’
In the case of many college coaches, when they leave one school to take a job at another, they have to pack up their belongings and move to a new home. Not so with Geoff Wayton, who left Indiana State to become head coach for the NCAA Division III Rose-Hulman men’s and women’s cross country team and an assistant to Larry Cole for its men’s and women’s track and field program. Wayton’s hiring was announced Aug. 12.
Hannahs adds Ronnie Prettyman to ISU baseball staff
Indiana State baseball coach Mitch Hannahs has announced that Ronnie Prettyman will join his staff as an assistant coach, starting with the 2013-2014 season.
METRO RONUDUP: Rose-Hulman picked 5th in HCAC football poll
The Rose-Hulman football has been selected to finish fifth in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference this season, in a preseason poll of league coaches released Wednesday.
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- Strong defensive effort keys RHIT victory