Elizabeth Weiers Named Winner Of Elite 89 Award For Second Straight Season

Posted on May 20th, 2015 by

Liz Weiers has earned the NCAA Elite 89 for the second year in a row.

Canton, New York – For the second year in a row, Gustavus Adolphus senior track and field athlete Elizabeth Weiers (Le Center, Minn.) has been named the recipient of the Elite 89 award for the 2014 NCAA Division III Track and Field Championships. Weiers, who majors in English, will graduate in June with a perfect 4.0 cumulative grade point average. She was presented the prestigious honor at the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships Banquet held on Wednesday, May 20 in the Newell Field House located on the campus of St. Lawrence University.

The Elite 89, an award founded by the NCAA, recognizes the true essence of the student-athlete by honoring the individual who has reached the pinnacle of competition at the national championship level in his or her sport, while also achieving the highest academic standard among his or her peers. The Elite 89 is presented to the student-athlete with the highest cumulative grade-point average participating at the finals site for each of the NCAA’s championships.

One of the most decorated hammer throw artists in program history, Liz Weiers will put the finishing touches on her brilliant career this weekend at the Merrick-Pinkard Track and Field Complex. With a school-record, season-best toss of 173-feet 11-inches, Weiers heads into the NCAA Championships with the 11th-ranked hammer throw in the nation. The three-time all-conference performer will seek to build on the momentum of her MIAC Championships performance on the final day of competition on May 9. At the conference meet, Weiers took gold in the hammer for the second straight season with a winning toss of 168-feet 9-inches. Of the Gustavus women’s track and field program’s MIAC champions in the hammer throw, Kirstin Olinger ’96, Jen Mull ’97, and Weiers are two-time gold medalists.

To say that Liz Weiers is a standout both in the hammer throw cage and the classroom would be an understatement. The epitome of the NCAA’s Division III philosophy and the Three D’s (Discover, Develop, and Dedicate), Weiers has also separated herself in the academic sphere with a perfect GPA. Thanks to her academic prowess, Liz was recently named the winner of the Evelyn Young Award by the Gustavus Athletics Department and is the reigning Elite 89 award winner. Named after legendary Gustavus Food Services Director Evelyn Young, the award bearing her name is presented to the female senior student-athlete with the highest cumulative GPA.

“Elizabeth brings a distinctive combination of insight, humor, and intellectual curiosity to the classroom and to her work,” said associate professor Sarah Ruble who serves as Weiers’ academic advisor in the religion department. “She is the kind of student who isn’t content with finding right answers–she also wants to ask the important, difficult questions. She asks questions that make us all look back at the material, at our assumptions, and at ourselves.”

Professor Ruble went on to say that Liz marries a strong work ethic – coming prepared, doing the research – with a deeply curious mind. “She is always looking for the next question or the new perspective. I regularly learn new things or see what I knew in different ways because of Elizabeth and her work in my courses. She is also good at finding humor, even in serious subjects. That ability is a gift in any classroom.”

Now in its sixth year of existence, Weiers is the fifth Gustavus student-athlete to receive an Elite 89 Award and the first to earn the honor twice.  Weiers follows in the footsteps of four women’s hockey players including Nara Higano (2010), Sarah Yungner (2011), and Marah Sobczak (2012), Carolyn Draayer (2013).

On Friday, May 22, Elizabeth Weiers will represent the Gustavus track and field program one last time. She will complete in the hammer throw on the national stage for the second time in her career and will look to repeat last season’s breakout performance where she moved up six spots from her pre-meet ranking to finish 13th overall and earn All-America Honorable Mention status. The hammer throw will begin at 3:00 p.m. (EST) and is the only women’s throwing event of the day.

For more information on the Elite 89 award winners, log on to NCAA.org and NCAA.com/elite-89

For more detailed information about the NCAA Championships, St. Lawrence University has set up a website detailing men’s and women’s qualifiers, a schedule of events, ticket information, maps, lodging information, and live broadcast links.


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