Joplin, Mo. -- Missouri Southern men's track and field coach Bryan Schiding has announced the addition of 19 individuals to participate in track and field at Southern begining this fall.
The list of athletes includes 14 high schoolers, three junior college transfers and two Division II transfers. Amongst the group is eight All-State performances, three state championships, two All-Americans and one National Champion.
"I am pleased to announce our recruiting class for 2014-15," Schiding said. "Our coaching staff worked very hard to bring in student-athletes with talent both on the track and in the classroom. We always expect our program's to be in contention for MIAA titles, and feel these young men will help to continue our program's success. We graduated three impact athletes last year and needed to fill their spots, and our outdoor season showed us that we needed more depth in a few areas. Our young men are putting in a great summer, and we have high expectations."
Below are short informational pieces on each student-athlete.
Tanner Erhart – Central Heights High School, KS – Personal Best Shot Put 52'10 (Height 6'2, Weight 205)
3rd Place 2013 3A State Shot Put
"Tanner Erhart, at 6'2 205, has a very high ceiling. Tanner will be a great addition in the Shot put and could also make a pretty good weight/hammer thrower as well."
Mitchell Hilger – Garden Plain High School, KS – Personal Best : Javelin – 188'7 (Height 5'10, weight 170)
2013 5A Javelin State Champion- 2014 4A State Champion
"Mitchell Hilger will add much needed depth to our Javelin squad. Mitch is very fast, athletic, and versatile, having dabbled in multiple events in high school. He will be a great asset to help expand our throws team."
Tyler Hovey- Iowa Central CC, IA- Personal Best: College Shot Put 57'4", College Discus 161'11 (HT 6'3, Wt 245)
2014 JuCo National Champion Shot Put & 5th Place JuCo All-American Discus
"Tyler will have an immediate impact at our conference and NCAA level. He has put in a great summer of training and we are excited to see what he will do for Southern."
David Smith Jr – Edmond Memorial High School, OK - Personal Bests: Shot put – 54'2, Discus – 176-8 (Height 6'3, weight 260) 2013 6A State Runner-up Discus , 6A 4th Place Shot Put, 2014 6A State Champion Discus
"David Smith will be a great compliment to our current Discus throwers and I think could make an immediate impact in the Shot Put, Weight, and Hammer as well."
Derek Webb – Eudora High School, KS - High School Best Javelin – 185'10 (Height 6'1, weight 190)
Johnson County Community College Best Javelin – 209'6" 2013: 7th place JuCo Nationals, All-American, 2014: 5th place JuCo Nationals, All-American
"Derek Webb will be competitive at the conference level right away. He has the build you look for in a Javelin thrower and has seen success at the Junior College level and will continue to do so as a Lion."
Chris Alleman- Ray-Pec HS, MO – Personal best: High Jump 6'5" (HT 6'0, WT 180)
"Chris will be joining our multi-athlete's training. He is mainly a high jumper with good potential in other events."
Isaac Hamilton- McMurry University, TX-Personal bests: Triple Jump 47'9.75", Long Jump 23'9.5", 100m 10.92, 200m 22.01 (HT 5'11, WT 170)
"Isaac will bring depth to the jumps program and help with our relays. He if full of untapped potential and has an outstanding work ethic. We are very fortunate to have a young man with his character and ability joining us."
Thomas Hawkins II- Lee's Summit North HS, MO- Personal bests: 200m 21.70, 400m 49.22 (HT 6'6, WT 198)
"Thomas is a strong sprinter who will have a future in the 400h. It's a rarity to have someone with his height have good foot speed. He will complement our sprinters and relays well."
Kennan Harrison- Carthage Senior HS, MO- Personal bests: Triple Jump 46' 1.25", Long Jump 20'10.5" (HT 5'9, WT 150)
3rd Place 2014 MO Class 4 State Meet Triple Jump
"Kennan is another local talent. He has a great work ethic and the ability to be a very good triple jumper at our level."
Sam Kohrs- St. Charles High School, MO- Personal bests: Triple Jump 44'10, Long Jump 22'4.5", 400m 49.47 (HT 6', WT 155)
2014 MO Class 3 State Meet: 3rd Triple Jump, 6th Long Jump, 7th 400m
"Sam was recruited as a triple jumper after we watched a video which showed great potential. He developed in to a solid Long Jumper and 400m his senior year. We're anxious to see what his potential will be."
Garner Rudroff –South Calloway HS MO- Personal Bests: Long jump 22'4.5", Triple Jump 44'4" (HT 5'9, WT 150)
2013 & 2014 MO Class 2 State Champion Long Jump
Desmond Williams- McMurry University, TX- Personal Bests: Long jump 24'7", 100m 10.86, 200m 21.16 (HT 5'10, WT 155)
"Des is another athlete who will have an immediate impact at our conference and NCAA level. His versatility is his strongest attribute. Both he and Isaac will be on our relays and help propel them to the national Stage."
Steven Chorma- O'Fallon HS, IL- Personal bests: 800m 157.95, 1600m 4:25.56, 3200 9:45.32. 3-Mile XC 15.03 (HT 6'1, WT 155)
2013 ISHA Cross Country Championships- 26th place
"Steven will bring versatility and depth to our distance program. He has a very strong background in training and will put in the mileage necessary to be successful for MSSU.
Travis Elbert- Washington HS, MO- Personal Bests: 1600m 4:31.84 (HT 5'7 WT 135)
Ben Grant- Coffeyville CC, KS- Personal Bests: 800m 1:58.81, indoor 1000m 2:38.79 (HT 5'11, Wt 140)
Carter Hensley- Carthage HS, MO- (HT 5'11, WT 130)
Gabe Lodge- Catholic HS, AR- Personal Bests: 800m 2:00 (HT 6', WT 160)
9TH Arkansas State Meet of Champions, 800m
Ben Southwick- Carthage HS, MO- Personal Bests: 800m 1:57.57, 1600, 4:32.37, 5k XC 16.09 (HT 5'7, WT 146)
68th @ 2014 Missouri State XC Championships, 9th MO Class 4 State Track Meet
"Again, it's great to continue to get local talent. Ben will be a versatile runner which we will expect production both in XC and Track."
Thomas Zeilman- Fatima HS, MO- Personal Bests: 800m 156.74, 1600m 4:26.00, 5k XC 17:16.91 (HT 5'10, WT 150)
21th @ 2014 Missouri State XC Championships, 2014 MO Class 2 State Champion 800m, Runner-up 1600m
"Tom will be another outstanding MD runner for us. He has great versatility. We will train him with the middle distance group, but he has the foot speed to drop down to the 4x400 if necessary. We are very excited to get Tom on Campus."