Former Cranston West star and current CCRI runner Bobby Allen made national news last season as a freshman for the Knights.
Now in his sophomore year, Allen is making even more.
Competing at the NJCAA Indoor Track National Championships this weekend at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas, Allen defended his national championships in both the 3,000m run and the mile.
Allen won both crowns by only a few seconds over Iowa Central’s Tahir Chakisso, who took second in each of the two events. Allen ran in the front of the pack in each event, waiting patiently for the last 500 meters. At that point he made his decisive move, putting some distance in between him and the field.
Allen won the 3,000m race on Friday evening with an impressive 8:32.75 effort, out-pacing Chakisso, who ran an 8:34.84. Allen came back on Saturday to win the mile in 4:15.40, beating Chakisso again, as he ran a 4:18.30.
Allen now owns six total national titles and eight All-American honors.
“Bobby held tough as a returning event winner and showed a maturity as an athlete running his own race plan for both races,” CCRI head coach Gregg Cornell said. “He has made his mark once again, representing the CCRI Knights at the national level in classy fashion showing respect for the other runners in his races.”
Also competing for CCRI were Steven Vazquez and Daniel Duquette. Both men, who were on their first trip to a NJCAA national event, competed tough, with Vazquez finishing 12th in the high jump with a 6-foot-6.75 inch leap. Duquette placed 21st in the 800m with a time of 2:00.35. The meet was won by South Plains College with 177 points. CCRI tied for 12th out of 31 scoring teams. The Knights had 20 points.
The national titles finished off a special couple of weeks for Allen, who was honored at the 67th annual World Unlimited sports banquet last Sunday as the recipient of the Tom Doherty/Male Athlete of the Year award. He became the first ever CCRI student-athlete to win the award, which has been won in the past by such Rhode Island legends as Ernie DiGregorio, Davey Lopes, Mark Van Eeghen, Brad Faxon and Rocco Baldelli.
“We are all proud and happy for Bobby, who continues to rewrite the history running books here at CCRI,” Cornell said. “He has been the leader of our cross country and track programs since he walked through the doors. He is, by far, our hardest worker who leads by example. No matter what the coaches ask of him, he does it and his only question is, ‘What’s next coach?’ In addition, he loves competition; the tougher the competition, the better he performs. It is a pleasure coaching him and watching his success as he is rewarded for all his hard work and dedication to the CCRI cross country and track programs.”
CCRI’s Lynch earns WBCA Coach of the Year honors
CCRI Lady Knights head coach Kate Lynch will be honored for being named the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) Russell Athletic/WBCA JC/CC National Coach of the Year. Lynch has led the Lady Knights to an impressive 23-4 record, one of the best starts in program history. In addition, the Lady Knights have recently captured their 10th consecutive Region XXI title and second under Lynch, who has now won the title in both her seasons at the helm.
The Russell Athletic/WBCA National Coach of the Year is presented annually to one coach in each of the collegiate divisions: NCAA Division I, NCAA Division II, NCAA Division III, NAIA, and Junior College/Community College, as well as high school. All six Russell Athletic/WBCA National Coaches of the Year are presented annually at the Russell Athletic/WBCA Coach of the Year luncheon at the WBCA National Convention. The event will be held Monday, April 8 in New Orleans, La.
The award measures team success during current season, team improvement from previous season, fulfillment of team potential and professional manner and attitude of coach. A selection committee in each division chooses the Coach of the Year via a conference call from the pool of Regional Coaches of the Year. NCAA Division III always includes their Final Four coaches in the pool of nominees. JC/CC does not have Regional Coaches of the Year, therefore all nominees are considered for this award.
"It is certainly a huge honor and I am still at a loss for words, but I really see it as more of a team award,” Lynch said. “I would not have had this opportunity if it was not for my amazing staff. I have two assistants who work so hard every day, on and off the court, and go above and beyond to make our program successful. This award belongs to our players too. They are the ones who get out on the court every single day and go to battle. Because of their determination, hard work and focus, they have brought this program to the level it is at today.”
CCRI women’s basketball team administrator and CCRI Compliance Officer Bev Wiley, also added:
“One of Kate’s strongest qualities both on the court and in the classroom is that she gets her student athletes to believe in themselves and inspires them to do more than they think they can. Her passion for the sport and the coaching profession is what makes her a great coach. This passion is infectious, which motivates and inspires her student athletes to work hard and be successful.”
Lady Knights to sign Marlou Peters from the Netherlands
The CCRI Lady Knights basketball team has signed its first recruit for the 2013-2014 season. Dutch basketball player Marlou Peters (Nijmegen, Netherlands) has given her verbal commitment to attend the Community College of Rhode Island next year. Peters is currently applying and going through the extensive international enrollment process.
Peters comes to CCRI from Nijmegen, a municipality in the eastern Netherlands near the German border. Peters is a 6-foot-1 post player who could fit right into the Lady Knights’ system. “We are very excited that Marlou chose to come to CCRI,” CCRI head coach Kate Lynch said. “She is very athletic and is excellent around the basket. She brings a great set of skills and is going to make a big impact on our program.”
Peters is a student at Johan Cruyff Institute for Sports Studies in Nijmegen, a school known for educating only the top athletes in the country (Cruyff was a top international for the Netherlands). Only student-athletes that play at the highest level of their respective sports are chosen for entry into the school.
Peters plays for the Black Eagles of Rosmalen in the Promotiedivisie, which is the Dutch equivalent to Division I AAU, and has also played internationally for the for the Dutch National team.
“Marlou is going to be a great addition to our program,” Lynch said. “She has already played at the highest level in her country and brings a lot of maturity and experience. We are really looking forward to seeing her in green and white.”