Creese, Kovacs Garner Big Ten Athlete of the Week Status
April 18, 2012
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Freshman Robby Creese (Mount Airy, Md.) and senior Joe Kovacs (Nazareth, Pa.) have been named Big Ten Track and Field Athletes of the Week, announced by conference offices on Wednesday. Both Nittany Lions enjoyed record-setting performances at the Bison Outdoor Classic at Bucknell University last weekend, as Creese set the all-time Christy Mathewson Stadium record in the 1500 meters, while Kovacs reset his own facility shot-put standard.
Creese, who was named Big Ten Freshman of the Year during the indoor season, was the individual victor in the men's 1500, finishing in a facility record and lifetime-best 3:43.79 to better the field by nearly three seconds. The rookie's effort is also the best in the Big Ten this season, as well as a top 10 performance in the NCAA East Region. This marks Creese's second-career Athlete of the Week citation, as the rookie garnered the honor following a collegiate-record 2:19.53 for the 1000-meters in January.
Kovacs turned in a pair of victories in Lewisburg, taking titles in both the shot put and the discus. The senior took top honors in a stellar shot put field, via a personal-outdoor best 63-10.25 (19.46), which also bettered his own stadium record in the event. Kovacs is tops in the conference with the performance, and fourth in the NCAA rankings.
Kovacs tossed a season-best 176-9 (53.88) to add a win the discus, while teammate Will Barr (Urbana, Ohio) went 174-8 (53.23) for second - season bests for both athletes. Kovacs earns his second conference citation in 2012, as the senior was named Big Ten Athlete of the Week following his outstanding efforts at the Jim Click Shootout at Arizona last month.
The Nittany Lions will be split across the country this weekend, competing at the Mt. SAC Relays in Walnut, Calif., the War Eagle Invitational in Auburn, Ala., and the Bucknell Team Challenge, in Lewisburg, Pa.
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