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Runner, assistant coach to compete in USA Track and Field Championships

Women’s track and field student-athlete Janelle Noe and UT Assistant Coach Samantha Bluske will each represent Toledo this week at the USA Track and Field Championships in Des Moines, Iowa.

Noe will compete in the first round of the 1500m Thursday, June 21, at 4:35 p.m. Eastern time.

Senior Janelle Noe and Assistant Coach Samantha Bluske will compete in the 1,500m and 10K events, respectively, at the USA Track and Field Championships this week in Des Moines, Iowa.

Bluske will follow in the 10K final at 8 p.m. Eastern time.



“Competing in this meet is not something that most collegiate athletes get a chance to do,” Head Coach Linh Nguyen said. “With Janelle qualifying and being healthy, she wanted to go and see what she could do, and I thought it would be a great experience. The hope is that she’s back at the NCAA finals next year and contending, so running the USA Championships will be an invaluable experience for that.

“This is just a tremendous way to cap off what has been a historic year for Janelle,”
he said.

Noe heads into the championships following a strong performance at the NCAA Outdoor Championships, where she beat her personal record by six seconds in the 1500m prelims (4:10.83) and finished 11th in the finals after crossing the line in 4:20.37. Noe claimed the best finish by a Rocket in the NCAA Championships since April Williams took eighth in the triple jump in 2007.

Noe is coming off a breakout season that saw here lower her 1,500m time by almost 20 seconds and break the Mid-American Conference record at the MAC Championship Meet with a time of 4:17.01.

In addition to her success on the track, her continued recovery from an off-campus incident that occurred in 2016 that left her severely burned has gained the attention of national publications, and news outlets and fans are eager to see what’s next for the Sylvania, Ohio, native.



“I’m excited to come out here to the U.S. Championships,” Noe said. “I’m able to toe the line with some of the nation’s best runners and that is an absolute amazing experience. I’m coming out here with no time or place goals in mind. I just want to go out there, try my hardest, and see where I can finish among top athletes.

“It’s honestly just an amazing experience and accomplishment to qualify for this race,” she said.

“I’m racing longer into a season than I ever have,” Noe added. “I really have no expectations except to do my best with how I’m feeling and take advantage of the opportunity I’ve been given. I’m really looking forward to hopefully meeting some of the pro runners. I’ll for sure be awestruck seeing them. Racing with them for the first time will be a very neat experience.”



Bluske, who’s competing under her sponsor rabbit, last ran in the Portland Track Festival June 9. She took fifth in the 10K after finishing in a personal best 33:00.59. The competition was only Bluske’s third of the year and her first 10K since 2014. Her time narrowly missed the USA Track and Field Championship automatic qualifying mark of 33:00.00, but she made it in thanks to several scratches.



“I’m really excited to be representing UT and rabbit this week at the championships,” Bluske said. “I ran my qualifier about 10 days ago after taking a four-year break from the track, so being able to drop down from the marathon to the track has been a goal for me. I’m excited to mix it up in a big race with a lot of talented women and see if I can finish higher than my seed.”




Fans can follow the USA Track and Field Championships action via NBC and NBCSN, or online with an NBC Sports Gold membership.



Rockets named to Scholar All-America list

The Toledo women’s swimming and diving team was named to the College Swimming and Diving Coaches Association of America Scholar All-America list.

The Rockets earned a 3.59 grade-point average during the 2017-18 season.

The women’s swimming and diving team earned a 3.59 GPA during the spring portion of the 2017-18 season.

UT’s GPA was the 32nd highest of all Division I swimming and diving programs and was the third-best in the Mid-American Conference.



The College Swimming and Diving Coaches Association of America named 710 teams to its Scholar All-America list for spring semester.

The teams represent 476 institutions from across all NCAA, the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics and the National Junior College Athletic Association Divisions.

The College Swimming and Diving Coaches Association of America recognizes teams with the Scholar All-America Award for achieving a team GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Former Rocket named to New Orleans Saints Hall of Fame

The New Orleans Saints announced that former Rocket wide receiver Lance Moore will be inducted into their Hall of Fame in a ceremony Friday, Sept. 14. 



Moore played 11 seasons in the NFL (2005 to 2015), nine of them with the Saints. He caught 360 passes in his pro career, including a career-high of 78 in 2008.

Former Rocket Lance Moore made this spectacular catch for a two-point conversion in Super Bowl XLIV. The photo appeared in Sports Illustrated.

He battled injuries throughout most of 2009, but came back in time to help New Orleans win Super Bowl XLIV. His acrobatic snag of a two-point conversion was key in the Saints’ 31-17 victory over the Indianapolis Colts. 



Moore played for the Rockets from 2000 to 2003, earning first-team All-Mid-American Conference honors in his junior and senior seasons.

As a junior, he set then-UT records for receptions (103), receiving yards (1,194) and TD receptions (9). His biggest game came in a 35-31 win over No. 9 Pittsburgh in which he caught the game-winner in the corner of the end zone in the waning moments of the contest.

As a senior, Moore caught 90 passes for 1,189 yards, setting the school mark for TD receptions with 15, including three scores in Toledo’s 35-27 win over Miami in the 2004 MAC Championship Game.

He also was an excellent student, earning Academic All-America honors as a senior in 2004.

Moore was inducted into the Varsity T Hall of Fame in 2011.

Baseball player named third-team All-American

Former Toledo baseball player Ross Adolph was named a third-team American Baseball Coaches Association/Rawlings All-American on Saturday.

Adolph becomes the sixth All-American in program history, joining Roger Coe (1974), Mitch Maier (freshman 2001, 2003-04), Sean Dobson (2004), AJ Montoya (freshman, 2015), and John Servello (freshman, 2018).



Adolph

Adolph, a first-team American Baseball Coaches Association/Rawlings All-Region selection, recently became the 46th player in school history taken in the Major League Baseball draft. The 12th-round selection by the New York Mets wrapped up one of the best seasons ever by a Toledo hitter.

The first-team All-Mid-American Conference and All-MAC Defensive Team selection tied the program’s single-season home run record in 2018 with 15, tied for most in the league. He also led the MAC in RBIs (56) and was tops on the squad with 50 runs scored, 69 hits, 12 stolen bases, a .654 slugging percentage, and a .445 on-base percentage. He became the first Rocket with double-digit home runs since 2010 (Jared Hoying and Dan Sherwood, 10).

The Findlay, Ohio, native was one of two MAC players named an All-American by American Baseball Coaches Association/Rawlings, joining former Kent State pitcher Joey Murray.

UT runner to throw out first pitch at Mud Hens’ game

Senior distance runner Janelle Noe will throw out the first pitch at the Toledo Mud Hens’ game Saturday, June 16, in honor of “You Will Do Better in Toledo Night.”

She also will be presented with a jersey from the club as part of the ceremony. Game time is 7 p.m. at Fifth Third Field. Toledo will face the Louisville Bats.

Noe

Noe is being honored for her recent triumph on the track along with her perseverance since coming back from a 2016 incident that left much of her body covered in severe burns. The 2018 outdoor track and field season has seen Noe cut her 1500m time down to a program-best 4:10.83.

Most recently, Noe took 11th place at last week’s NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Eugene, Ore., earning Second-Team All-America honors.

“I never thought I’d throw out the first pitch at a Mud Hens’ game or any baseball game, so that’s really cool,” Noe said. “I feel really honored that they want me to do it on ‘You Will Do Better in Toledo Night.’”

“Janelle’s story of perseverance and triumph exemplifies exactly what we are celebrating — extraordinary people doing extraordinary things in our community,” said Tyler Clark, special event and game day presentation coordinator for the Toledo Mud Hens.

UT announces new women’s golf coach

Jenny Coluccio has been named the women’s golf coach at The University of Toledo, UT Vice President and Athletic Director Mike O’Brien announced Thursday.

She is the third head coach in program history. Coluccio comes to Toledo after serving as an assistant coach for the University of Illinois women’s golf program for the last five years.

“We are excited to have Jenny as the new leader of our women’s golf program,” O’Brien said. “Her passion for golf and her ability to teach the game as well as recruit will be extremely beneficial to our student-athletes. She has experienced tremendous success as a head coach and assistant coach at the collegiate level. We look forward to watching the impact she makes on our program.”

During her five years with the Fighting Illini, Coluccio helped the program register their fifth and sixth NCAA Regional appearances in program history and collect All-Big Ten accolades on eight occasions. During her tenure, the Illini vaulted nearly 100 spots in the Golfstat’s national rankings — No. 122 in 2013 to No. 23 at the conclusion of the 2018 campaign. In addition, the women’s golf program currently holds the athletic department’s high grade-point average.

“I would like to thank Mike O’Brien and The University of Toledo for this tremendous opportunity,” Coluccio said. “I am honored and grateful to become part of the Rockets’ family and lead the women’s golf program. I am impressed and motivated by the support from the administration, staff and community for the program. With the strong foundation that is present here, the potential is limitless. I’m looking forward to building on the success the team has experienced in recent years, and I’m very excited to see how far we can go.”

Coluccio also wanted to express her gratitude for the support she has received during her time in Champaign, as well as throughout her entire coaching career.

“I cannot thank (Illinois Women’s Golf Coach) Renee Slone and the University of Illinois enough for allowing me to be a part of their lives and success over the past five years,” Coluccio said. “I also want to say thank you to my family, friends, mentors and peers who have all continued to challenge me to improve every step of the way.”

This past season, Illinois registered its best regional finish ever, with four golfers earning All-Big Ten honors and setting 13 school records. The Fighting Illini narrowly missed making a trip to the NCAA Championships, finishing one spot away from qualifying with a seventh-place standing at the NCAA Madison Regional. Illinois also tied for second place at the Big Ten Championships, its best showing since 1976, and set a team scoring average for the third year in a row with a mark of 289.6 (over six strokes better than the previous best).

Prior to arriving in Champaign, Coluccio spent three seasons as the head men’s and women’s golf coach at NCAA Division II University of Sioux Falls. Coluccio led the USF men’s golf team to a third-place finish at the 2013 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Championship, while the women placed fourth. Sophomore Tavia Rutherford became the first Cougar golfer to compete in the NCAA Central Region Tournament since USF reached NCAA Division II status.

In 2011, Coluccio guided her men’s and women’s teams to second- and third-place finishes, respectively, in the Great Plains Athletic Conference. In the same year, she produced six All-GPAC selections (four men, two women) while her teams set impressive grade-point averages in the classroom (3.2 for the men, 3.5 for the women).

Before becoming head coach at USF, Coluccio served two seasons as a graduate assistant for Dakota Wesleyan University in Mitchell, S.D., working with both men’s and women’s teams. The Tigers claimed men and women’s GPAC regular-season championships and advanced to the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics Championships for the first time ever during her stint.

A native of Springfield, Mo., Coluccio earned a bachelor’s degree in sports management from Drury (Mo.) University in 2007 and a master’s degree in educational administration and policy from Dakota Wesleyan in 2010. She was a three-time All-Great Lakes Valley Conference golfer for the Panthers, while also collecting 12 top-15 tournament finishes. She has competed in several tournaments throughout her playing career, including the Women’s Western Amateur, Women’s Trans National Amateur, College Players Tour, Futures Tour Qualifying School and LPGA Qualifying School.

Coluccio and her husband, Brett, have two sons, Braden, 3, and Walker, who was born in November 2017.

UT baseball players named to Mideast all-region team

Former Rockets Ross Adolph and Sam Shutes were named to the 2018 American Baseball Coaches Association/Rawlings Mideast All-Region team.

They are the first all-region honorees for Toledo since Tyler Grogg and Ben Hammer in 2013.



Adolph, a first-team selection, recently became the 41st player in school history taken in the Major League Baseball draft. The 12th-round selection by the New York Mets wrapped up one of the best seasons ever by a Toledo hitter.

The first-team All-Mid-American Conference and All-MAC Defensive Team selection tied the program’s single-season home run record in 2018 with 15, tied for most in the league. He also led the MAC in RBIs (56) and was tops on the squad with 50 runs scored, 69 hits, 12 stolen bases, a .654 slugging percentage and a .445 on-base percentage. He became the first Rocket with double-digit home runs since 2010 (Jared Hoying and Dan Sherwood (10).



Shutes, a second-team honoree, wrapped up his career with one of the finest seasons ever by a Toledo pitcher.

A 2018 first-team All-MAC selection, he went 10-2 this season with a 2.97 ERA in 97.0 innings. The senior struck out 82 batters and walked just 30. He became the third pitcher in school history with at least 10 wins in a season and led the league in wins and innings pitched. He twice earned MAC Pitcher of the Week honors and MAC Scholar-Athlete of the Week distinctions.

On the final day of the regular season, Shutes threw the first complete-game shutout by a Rocket pitcher since 2014, blanking Bowling Green while facing just two batters above the minimum. He also earned National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association National Pitcher of the Week honors after his stellar performance against the Falcons.

UT runner earns Second-Team All-America honors

Senior Janelle Noe earned Second-Team All-America honors for her performance at the NCAA Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships, the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association announced Monday.

“Being named an All-American is a huge deal,” Head Coach Linh Nguyen said. “With this honor, Janelle joins an elite list of Toledo track and field athletes, and solidifies her position among the very best 1500-meter runners in the NCAA. This is a career goal for all college athletes, and for her to earn it is a testament to her hard work, dedication and talent.”

Noe

Noe finished 11th in the 1500m June 9 in Eugene, Ore., crossing the line in 4:20.37. With her finish, Noe claimed the best finish by a Rocket in the NCAA Championships since April Williams took eighth in the triple jump in 2007.

Student-athletes earned First-Team All-America status by finishing among the top eight of their events, including as members of a relay team, at the NCAA Championships. Second-Team All-America honors went to those student-athletes who finished between ninth and 16th place.

Overall, there were 433 First-Team All-Americans and 433 Second-Team All-Americans. Noe was one of eight Mid-American Conference student-athletes to be named an All-American, and was one of six to be honored Second-Team All-America.

UT runner takes 11th at NCAA Championships

Senior Janelle Noe wrapped up the NCAA Track and Field Championships Saturday with an 11th-place finish in the 1500m.

Noe crossed the line in 4:20.37 and was named Second-Team All-America following the race in Eugene, Ore.

With her finish, Noe claimed the best finish by a Rocket in the NCAA Championships since April Williams took eighth in the triple jump in 2007.

“I can’t feel anything but immense pride for what she’s accomplished this season,” Head Coach Linh Nguyen said. “For what she’s done this year, it’s been a dream season really, and I told her this morning that if we walk away from here and she finished last in the race today, we’re going to walk away happy and smiling. There’s no other way you can look at it; it was a huge success.

“Nothing’s given and I think she, more than anyone, knows that nothing beyond today is guaranteed,” Nguyen added. “I just want her to stay healthy. If she stays healthy and trains consistently, then I think she can do special things next year.”

Noe’s 4:10.83 time from Thursday qualified her for the USA Track and Field Championships. A decision whether or not she will participate will be made soon.

UT runner qualifies for NCAA Championships

Senior Janelle Noe finished fourth in the 1500m semifinals with a time of 4:10.83 at the NCAA Track and Field Championships Thursday in Eugene, Ore.

Noe’s time qualified her for Saturday’s finals and beat her personal record by six seconds.

“Honestly, I was just going out there and trying to stay within striking distance of the top six or seven for automatic qualifying,” Noe said. “I just kept telling myself to hang on and focused on staying in that top seven group, and then made a move in the last 400 meters to stay solid.”

Noe’s strategy today was similar to how she has run all season: stay with the lead group and turn up the heat in the final stretch.

“The strategy was ‘top five qualifies,’ so I told her to get out in the front and kind of chill toward the back of the top five and see where you are,” Head Coach Linh Nguyen said. “I told her if the lead group really goes crazy, you can let them go a little bit because you can be top seven and be fast and still make finals. She was going to let them go if they went too fast, but I told her to run how you feel.”

Looking ahead to Saturday’s finals, Noe and Nguyen both agreed on a new strategy: have fun.

“I never really thought about racing in NCAA finals and having a shot to win it all because I never thought I’d be able to make it this far,” Noe said. “I’m just going to go out there Saturday and run as hard as I can and whatever place I end up with, I’m going to be happy with it. I guess I’ll make my goal top eight to get first-team (All-America), but, honestly, I’m just going to go out there and run as hard as I can and whatever happens, happens.”

The 1500m finals are set to begin at 6:41 p.m. Eastern time Saturday, June 9. The race will be broadcast live on ESPN.