’Birds welcome new coach and teammates

Stephanie Fisher

Sports Reporter

Archive Photo: Zilmer is excited to welcome Bovee and her new teammates for the fall season.

Archive Photo: Zilmer is excited to welcome Bovee and her new teammates for the fall season.

Illinois State University’s track and field team has is looking forward to the future. Jeff Bovee was recently appointed as director of both the track and cross-country programs on Monday.

Bovee brings extensive experience to the table for this new position, having been on the coaching staff for cross-country the past eight seasons. He also earned MVC Women’s Coach of Year in 2011 and 2012, strengthening his case for the position.

Distance runner and national qualifier for the steeplechase, Kristen Zillmer, is more than thrilled for Bovee.

“He has worked so hard from the beginning, and I think Bovee will do big things for the team. We are lucky to now have him as head coach.” Zillmer said.

Zillmer will be accompanied at nationals by some of her fellow Redbirds including shot put throwers Curt Jensen and Jianna Williams. Both Jensen and Williams had solid seasons, but Williams impressed everyone by throwing a near personal best at the Arkansas regional.

Shocking the crowd, Williams qualified for nationals, even though she was ranked 43rd in the field. Bovee was ecstatic with William’s performance.

“It was just a phenomenal performance by her, and she really stepped it up today,” said Bovee. “Nationals will be a fantastic opportunity for her.”

The NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships won’t be the only highlight of the year. This fall, ISU will be welcoming sixteen more Redbirds to the track and field roster.

Where the Redbirds will lack in throwers and sprinters due to graduating athletes, Bovee has filled the void with talented newcomers.

With so many multi-sport athletes rounding out the roster, ISU track and field has high hopes for success in the upcoming season.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *