Koyiaki, Mutiso, Skiles Named PBC Runners of the Year
PEMBROKE, N.C. -- Columbus State’s Meshack Koyiaki and
Clayton State's Fidelis Mutiso were named the Peach Belt Conference
men’s co-Runners of the Year while CSU’s Brittany
Skiles was named the women’s Runner of the Year at a banquet
on the eve of the PBC Championships in Pembroke, N.C. Augusta
State’s Adam Ward was also named the women’s Coach of
the Year while CSU’s J.D. Evilsizer was named the men’s
Coach of the Year.
In his first season at Columbus State, Koyiaki was simply outstanding, winning all three races he began. He started his season at the 20-team Berry Invitational and took the title in 24:33. The sophomore from Kilgoris, Kenya, later won the CSU Cougar Invitational in 24:22, the fastest 8k time in the PBC this season. In between, he won the Mercer Invitational in a time of 24:57, 31 seconds ahead of the second-place runner. Koyiaki becomes the second Cougar to be named the Runner of the Year, joining 2006 winner John Riddle.
Fidelis Mutiso was the top Clayton State runner at all four races the Lakers ran in 2009. The junior from Nairobi, Kenya, won the Southern Challenge to finish the regular season in a time of 28:01 and had top-five finishes at both the JSU/Strut’s Season Opener and the Berry Invitational, where he finished third. Mutiso owns two of the top 10 fastest 8k times in the PBC this season. He becomes the third Laker in the last five years to be named a Runner of the Year after Bobby Valadez in 2005 and Walid Berkhedle in 2007.
Brittany Skiles was the top Columbus State runner in two of their three meets this season. She was named the PBC Runner of the Week on Sept. 28 after finishing fourth at the 20-team Mercer Invitational, beating all other PBC runners. The junior from Dawson, Ga., Finished in the top 10 in every race with a second at the CSU Cougar Invitational and 8th at the Berry Invitational. Skiles owns two of the top three fastest 5k times in the PBC this season. She is the second Lady Cougar to ever be named the PBC Runner of the Year, joining Isabel Speer who won in 2007.
Adam Ward collects his second straight women’s PBC Coach of the Year award after leading the Augusta State Jaguars to a win and a pair of top-three finishes in 2009. Ward guided ASU to their first NCAA National Finals appearance in 2008 and started 2009 on the same path with a win at the PBC Pre-Conference meet. ASU was third at the UGA Stampede and their own Jaguar Invitational. ASU is currently ranked fifth in the southeast region.
J.D. Evilsizer claims his second PBC men’s Coach of the Year award as he prepares the Cougars to make a run at their fourth straight PBC Championship, which would tie the conference mark for the second-longest string of consecutive titles. Evilsizer led the Cougars to wins at the Mercer Invitational and their own Cougar Invitational and a second-place at the Berry Invitational in 2009. CSU is currently ranked #2 in the southeast region.
CSU's Meshack Koyiaki, Clayton State's Fidelis Mutiso, ASU's Adam Ward, CSU's J.D. Evilsizer and CSU's Brittany Skiles at the PBC Awards Dinner.