Sports

DeBole named Stanford's women's head cross country coach

 

Elizabeth DeBole, in her third year with the program, has been named head women's cross country coach at Stanford, Director of Track and Field Chris Miltenberg announced Monday.

DeBole has been the primary coach for Stanford's women's distance runners since arriving on The Farm in June 2014.

Her responsibilities will not change, except that she now carries the title that fits the role she has already played. She becomes the 10th head coach in Cardinal women's cross country history while Miltenberg continues to coach the men's team.

"The incredible progress our women's team has made over the past two years is a direct result of Liz's contributions," Miltenberg said. "This title is really reflective of how we've been operating. Now, we're making sure she has the title she deserves. We're really excited to keep who we believe is the best young women's distance coach in the country on board and continue to develop our women."

Last year under DeBole, Elise Cranny was NCAA runner-up in the 1,500 meters, Aisling Cuffe was the Pac-12 cross country champ, Claudia Saunders earned her third top-four finish in the NCAA Outdoor 800, and five of DeBole's runners advanced to the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships. In 2014, school records fell in the 800 and distance medley relay, and Jessica Tonn was third in the NCAA Outdoor 5,000.

"I am truly honored to lead the next generation of Stanford women's cross country," DeBole said. "We have a phenomenal group on campus and working with these young women to achieve their goals on and off the track is extremely motivating. I'm thankful to coach Miltenberg for his confidence in me to lead the program. I'm looking forward to continuing to build on the already rich tradition of Stanford women's cross country."

Women's cross country has been one of the most successful programs at Stanford. The Cardinal has won five NCAA team titles, 14 regional crowns, and 20 conference championships. No team in the country has advanced to the NCAA Championships for 23 consecutive seasons as Stanford has. The Cardinal has placed 14th each of the past two years.

With an extremely talented group of incoming freshmen, there is hope for even more success, and their arrival is largely due to DeBole's recruiting efforts.

The class features World Under-20 1,500 bronze medalist Christina Aragon and U.S. junior 5,000 champion Fiona O'Keeffe. The class also consists of Hannah DeBalsi, the No. 5 high school two miler of all-time, Oregon's Gatorade Player of the Year Ella Donaghu, the No. 7 high school 1,500 runner ever, and Sarah Walker, who has run 2:03.70 in the 800.

When DeBole was first hired by Miltenberg, Emily Infeld, a member of this year's Olympic team and the 2015 world 5,000 bronze medalist, had this to say about her former teammate and volunteer coach: "I know that Liz will do a phenomenal job as a coach because she truly wants to help everyone succeed, in running and life. She is kind, smart, positive, and calm, even in the most nerve-wracking situations. She is a phenomenal person and just cares so much about the sport."

A three-year cross country and track and field team captain at Georgetown, the former Elizabeth Maloy was seventh at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials in the 5,000 while coached by Miltenberg. She placed among the top 10 at five U.S. championship meets and ran a personal best of 15:15.27.

In addition, the Loudonville, New York, native was a two-time USTFCCCA All-Academic selection and earned Big East Conference Scholar-Athlete honors. She is married to Matt DeBole, also a former runner at Georgetown. They have a son, George.

Stanford opens its season Sept. 3 at the USF Invitational at Golden Gate Park in San Francisco.

Other notable dates: Oct. 1, Stanford Invitational at Stanford Golf Course; Oct. 28, Pac-12 Championships in Tucson, Ariz.; and Nov. 19, NCAA Championships in Terre Haute, Ind.

Menlo College

Menlo College will host the Golden State Athletic Conference baseball championships in the spring, the conference announced Monday.

The GSAC announced championship sites through the 2018-19 school year as part of a study conducted by the conference's Administrative Committee.

Menlo will also host the men's and women's basketball finals in 2019 in addition to the earlier rounds of the women's basketball playoffs.

— Palo Alto Online Sports/Stanford Athletics

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