Track and Field

Track and Field

Winckler stepping down as women's track coach

CHAMPAIGN – Gary Winckler, who coached the Illinois women's track and field team to 11 Big Ten titles, announced this morning he will retire at the end of the outdoor season after 23 years at the school.

Winckler will be succeeded by UI associate head coach Tonja Buford-Bailey, a 10-time Illini All-American who is in her sixth season on Winckler's staff.

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Smith rates elite honor

CHAMPAIGN – Illinois sophomore Jenna Smith on Tuesday received honorable mention on The Associated Press All-America basketball team.

Smith, a first-team All-Big Ten selection, averaged 18.3 points and 9.4 rebounds this season.

Crall, gymnasts make their mark

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Julie Crall won the balance beam on the last routine of the night to lead Illinois to a second-place finish at the Big Ten Women's Gymnastics Championships.

The Illini tallied a season-high score of 195.750 to earn their highest finish since winning the event in 1990.

Haagensen, Ruggeri lead Illini charge

CHAMPAIGN – Wes Haagensen (89.600) and Paul Ruggeri (84.150) took the top two spots in the all-around competition Saturday as the sixth-ranked Illinois men's gymnastics team defeated No. 5 Michigan 357.150-353.200 at Huff Hall.

In addition to his all-around title, Haagensen won the parallel bars, just ahead of Illinois' Tyler Yamauchi and Brian Liscovitz. Haagensen also netted a second place in the horizontal bar event.

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Masheto captures fourth Big Ten championship

MADISON, Wis. – Gakologelwang Masheto added his fourth Big Ten track and field title Sunday by winning the 400-meter dash at the conference indoor championship meet.

The Illinois junior finished in 47.23 seconds, nearly 0.2 second faster than second-place finisher Jeremy Orr of Michigan State.

Hoffman, Illini claim national wheelchair basketball title

CHAMPAIGN – Carlee Hoffman had 19 points and 12 rebounds as the UI women's wheelchair basketball team defeated Alabama 44-43 on Saturday in the title game of the national tournament.

Evans' focus goes far beyond Big Ten Indoor Championships

CHAMPAIGN – It's a blustery afternoon in February. Aja Evans sits on the sideline at the UI Armory, twisting the ring – her late grandmother's wedding band – on her left ring finger while she contemplates the last two whirlwind years.

The Illinois sophomore, a graduate of Chicago Morgan Park, never suspected she would end up in Champaign-Urbana.

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