Last updated 11/24/17



Kemmler Earns All-Region Status
Argonauts place 14th at regional meet
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11/4/2017

LAKELAND, Fla. – The University of West Florida men's cross country team has wrapped up its 2017 season with a 14th-place finish at the NCAA South Region Championships at the Holloway Park and Nature Preserve. Senior Will Kemmler paced the Argos just as he has all season, finishing 18th of 117 with a time of 33:54.99 in the 10K race.

Kemmler's finish makes him an All-South Region runner for the second time in his career.

Juniors Micah Kemp and Brandon Battle also placed inside the top 80. Kemp's time of 35:07.59 and Battle's time of 36:27.24 were good for 53rd and 78th place, respectively.
Senior Joel Chairez and sophomore Ben Zalanka finished back-to-back at 36:37.32 and 36:39.10 good for 83rd and 84th. Two spots later the Argos had freshman Mackenzie Woods cross the finish line at 36:46.02. Sophomore Elijah Schneidewind wrapped up the Argos roster in 102nd with a time of 37:59.56.

The Argos finished with an average time of 36:12.7.

GSC rivals Lee and Alabama-Huntsville finished first in second in the meet. Lee University had two runners in the top eight while Alabama-Huntsville had three in the top 15. St. Leo of the Sunshine Conference finished in third place.

Lee won the event, and the Flames were followed by Alabama Huntsville and Saint Leo.

The NCAA National Championships will be held in two weeks on November 14th in Evansville, Indiana


Kemmler Earns Second Team All-GSC Honors
Argonauts finish seventh at GSC Championships
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10/21/2017

DANVILLE, Ala. — The University of West Florida men's cross country team placed seventh in the Gulf South Conference Championships with an average time of 26:19.48. The Argos had four student-athletes finish inside the top 50 and all seven inside the top 85, including William Kemmler, who finished 16th overall.

Kemmler's time of 25:32.89 was good to earn him second team All-GSC honors. Kemmler also picked up the award last year when he finished 12th.

Juniors Brandon Battle and Micah Kemp were able to push each other throughout the race as they finished back-to-back in 28th and 29th place with times of 25:58.5 and 26:01.34. Senior Joel Chairez was fourth for the Argos with a time of 26:40.58, good for 44th place.

Sophomores Benjamin Zalanka in 64th and Elijah Schneidewind in 85th bookended freshman Mackenzie Woods, who finished in 78th. Zalanka and Schneidewind had times of 27:24.08 and 28:27.07 with Woods coming in at 28:07.01.

Lee University has won the 2017 GSC Men's Cross Country Championship for the third straight year on Saturday, as six Flames runners earned All-GSC Honors.

The Flames were led by individual medalist Christian Noble who finished with a time of 24:31.26. Following quickly behind Noble were teammates Seth Eagleson in fourth and Harold Smith in ninth.

The GSC Freshman of the year was Union's Justine Kipkoech who finished fifth with a time of 24:57.54. Finishing second was Victor Onyango from West Alabama followed by Benjamin Knox from Alabama Huntsville in third.


Argos Finish 6th at FSU Invitational
Kemmler picks up another top five finish
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10/6/2017

TALLAHASSEE, Fla.— Another race, a new place, but a similar result for the University of West Florida men's cross country team on Friday at the Florida State Invitational, with three student-athletes finishing in the top 31 in the field. The Argos finished sixth in their division with an average time in the 8K of 26:56.72.

William Kemmler's strong season continued this week as he picked up another top-five finish, placing second in the College Division with a time 25:12.1. That time also placed him 13th overall for the race that included six Division I teams, and it is the sixth-fastest 8K time in UWF history.

Micah Kemp joined Kemmler in the top 30, placing 27th with a time of 26:54.5. With a time of 27:04.3, junior Brandon Battle was the third Argonaut to finish and placed 31st.

Joel Chairez and Mackenzie Woods finished in 44th and 47th, with times of 27:41.3 and 27:51.4, respectively. Sophomores Ben Zalanka and Elijah Schneidewind rounded out the Argos roster with times of 28:46.9 and 29:17.4. Of the 91 runners in the College Division, the Argos placed all seven at 63rd or better.

The Argos get a break from competition this coming week before turning their eyes to the Gulf South Conference Championship at the Oakville Indian Mounds Course in Danville, Alabama, on October 21.


Kemmler Leads UWF Men in Nashville
Senior Will Kemmler finishes seventh overall in field of 145
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9/23/2017

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The University of West Florida men's cross country team finished just outside the top 10, placing 11th in the Trevecca DII Showcase Invitational with a total team time of 2:19:33. The race featured six regionally ranked USTFCCCA teams and was swept by University Colorado-Colorado Springs.

William Kemmler posted his second top-10 finish on the young season, finishing seventh overall with a time of 26:14.1 after placing second in last week's race at the Montevallo Classic. Kemmler's pace put him at an average mile time of 5:16.7.

Brandon Battle finished second for the Argos with a time of 27:41.9, 45th overall, and Joel Chairez finished third for UWF with a time of 28:07.0, good for 56th overall.

Micah Kemp and Mackenzie Woods finished at 28:28.9 and 29:01.2, respectively, and Ben Zalanka and Elijah Schneidewind rounded out the Argos roster at 30:14.2 and 32:05.7.

The Argos will be off next weekend before they head to Tallahassee to compete in the Florida State Invitational on October 7th.


UWF Starts Season with Second-Place Finish at Falcon Classic
William Kemmler finishes third overall
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9/16/2017

MONTEVALLO, Ala. - Coming off an extra week of preparation, the University of West Florida men's cross country team opened the year with an impressive second place finish at the Montevallo Falcon Classic. With an average time of 27:44.04, the Argos finished behind only fellow GSC member Montevallo, which took home first place on its home turf.

Senior and team leader William Kemmler paced the Argos, finishing second overall with a time of 25:59.58.

UWF had a very strong showing in the meet overall, as the team placed three individual runners inside the top 20 and five in the top 50. Juniors Brandon Battle and Micah Kemp were able to push each other throughout the race, finishing 14th at 27:37.81 and 16th, just four seconds behind at 27:41.95

Joel Chairez finished in 21st at 27:55.25 and Mackenzie Woods clocked in at 29:25.58, good for 50th overall. Ben Zalanka, and Elijah Schneidewind rounded out the UWF lineup with times of 30:25.34 and 31:38.10, respectively.

The Argonauts had an extra week to prepare for this weekend's race after the event at Furman University was canceled due to the threat of Hurricane Irma. Next, the team heads to Nashville, Tennessee, for the Trevecca DII Showcase Invitational, on September 23.


UWF Crosses Third at GSC Championships
Wenger, Kemmler and Kerrigan finish in top 20
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10/22/2016

NEW MARKET, Ala. – The University of West Florida men's cross country team finished third out of 11 teams at the Gulf South Conference Championships on Saturday morning. The team was led by Tim Wenger, who finished 10th overall, and William Kemmler, who finished 12th.

Wenger's 25:41.41 is one of the best of his career, as he followed up on an individual win at the Florida State Invitational earlier this month. The race marks the third time in his career that he has taken a top 10 finish at the conference meet and earned All-GSC First Team honors. Wenger is the fifth UWF runner to earn a spot on the All-GSC first team in program history, and he is the eighth to take any type of all-conference honor in three years.

Kemmler and Don Kerrigan brought home second-team All-GSC honors, taking finishes in the top 20. Kemmler was not far behind Wenger, recording a 25:51.85 and taking a 12th-place finish, which is his second-best finish of the year. Rounding out the top 20 was the Pensacola native Kerrigan. The senior clocked a 26:23.16 in his final GSC Championships,

West Florida has had multiple all-conference runners in every season since 2009, and at least three Argonauts have been named all-conference runners in five of the last six years.

Brandon Battle crossed just under 27 minutes, at 26:57.85 and coming in at 33rd overall. Joel Chairez's 27:06.19 put him at 38th in the field, and Micah Kemp clocked a 27:18.83 and finished 47th. Colton Currier and freshman Elijah Schneidewind rounded out the Argonaut field, finishing just a second apart at 28:07.24 and 28:08.45, respectively.

West Florida will compete in the South Region Championships in Dade City, Florida, on November 5. The race will take place at Abbey Golf Course.


Wenger Takes Individual Crown at FSU Invitational
West Florida dominates team event, five Argos finish in top 10
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10/7/2016

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – University of West Florida men's cross country runner Tim Wenger took home the individual crown for the college race at the Florida State Invitational in Tallahassee on Friday morning. UWF claimed the team title for the second time this year, following a team win at the program's home event, the Gulf Coast Stampede, in September.

Wenger has finished first for UWF in his last five races, dating back to the Gulf South Conference Championships in 2015, and has eight top-five individual finishes in his last three seasons. West Florida finished the event with just 22 team points, defeating second-place Columbus State, which had 71.

"We talked before the race about being more aggressive with our strategy, because I thought we lost a little time out there last week," head coach Caleb Carmichael said. "We knew we wanted to beat the other Division II schools, so we took it out strong and I think we ran a good race. Obviously Tim was up there with the top FSU runners, and he finished it well."

Wenger's 26:04.4 was good for a nine-second cushion over Montevallo's Donny Barnes, who finished second. Pensacola's Don Kerrigan finished in third with a 26:26.0, which was just five seconds off his career-best time posted at the Chile Pepper Festival in Fayetteville, Arkansas, last week. William Kemmler was right behind Kerrigan with a 26:29.6 and a career-best fourth-place finish.

Brandon Battle took home a 26:48.1 and Micah Kemp finished in 26:54.0 to finish sixth and eighth, respectively. Joel Chairez was just behind that pair and finished 11th at 27:11.5 to conclude the first wave of UWF runners.

Freshman Elijah Schneidewind clocked a 28:24.6 to finish 27th, and Colton Currier finished at 29:07.4.

"Winning this race is huge, because we haven't won it in a very long time," Carmichael said. "I think they're really confident after this race, and we're eager to show up and run well at conference."

UWF will head to New Market, Alabama, for the GSC Championships on October 22.


Wenger Leads UWF to 11th-Place Finish in Fayetteville
The senior recorded a 25:48.52 in the 8K race
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10/2/2016

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Tim Wenger finished as West Florida's top runner at the Chile Pepper Festival hosted by the University of Arkansas on Saturday morning. Wenger clocked a 25:48.52 in the 8K race, which ranks as one of his best in his career at UWF.

West Florida finished 11th overall in a field that featured 46 teams and more than 350 individual runners. William Kemmler's 26:03.18 gave him a personal best by more than a minute. The junior from Cocoa, Florida's, previous best was a 27:14.77 that he clocked at the Mountain Dew Invitational in Gainesville, Florida, last year. Pensacola native Don Kerrigan and Jacksonville's Brandon Battle were not far behind, recording top-100 finishes at 26:13.78 and 26:21.57. Both of those times were personal bests for the runners.

A week after his third-place finish at the Gulf Coast Stampede, Micah Kemp ran a 26:27.70 and finished 101st. Just behind Kemp was Joel Chairez, with a 26:47.90, and Colton Currier's 27:52.60 bested his time from last week by more than a minute. Freshman Elijah Schneidewind shaved more than 30 seconds off his first collegiate 8K last week, running a 28:11.71 in Fayetteville on Saturday.

West Florida finished second among South Region universities at the Festival, coming in just behind an eighth-place crew from Florida Southern.

UWF runs at Florida State next Friday, October 7, at the FSU Invitational.


Wenger Takes Individual Win as UWF Cruises Through Gulf Coast Stampede
Seven Argonauts finish in top 10
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9/24/2016

PENSACOLA, Fla. – The University of West Florida men's cross country team crushed the competition at the 2016 Gulf Coast Stampede on Saturday morning. Led by individual champion Tim Wenger, the Argonauts saw all eight runners finish in the top 11.

Wenger clocked a 26:54.60 in his first collegiate win at UWF and recorded his seventh top-five finish as an Argonaut. He was followed closely by Micah Kemp, whose personal-best 8K time of 27:04.80 earned a third-place finish. The Jay, Florida, native topped his previous personal best by 13 seconds.

Don Kerrigan at 27:18.80 and William Kemmler at 27:25.20 rounded out the top five in the race and gave West Florida four top-five finishers.

Brandon Battle picked up seven points for UWF's team score and the seventh-place finish was a personal best for the sophomore. His time of 28:12.20 came in just before the 28:21.70 from Joel Chairez, who finished in eighth place. Colton Currier and Elijah Schneidewind finished in 10th and 11th, respectively, with times of 28:37.60 and 28:43.70.

UWF scored 20 points as a team in the victory, beating Spring Hill's 59 by 39 points.

The season continues next week at the Chile Pepper Festival in Fayetteville, Arkansas.


UWF Men's Cross County Crosses 8th in Covered Bridge Open
Wenger leads the way with a 21:13.35 in the 6K run
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9/6/2016

BOONE, N.C. – 2015 NCAA Championships qualifier Tim Wenger opened his senior season with a 21:13.35 in the 6K at the Covered Bridge Open hosted by Appalachian State on Friday afternoon. UWF finished 8th as a team in a tightly contested field that included six Division I programs.

Wenger's finish was good for 30th in the field of 105, while sophomore and Jay, Florida, native Micah Kemp finished 54th with a 21:45.03, picking up 43 points for the team score. The final five UWF runners in the field finished between 47th and 60th in points totals and the difference in their times spanned less than two minutes.

William Kemmeler's 21:55.16 was good for 59th overall and gained the team 47 points, while Brandon Battle and Joel Chairez stuck together and crossed at 22:11.93 and 22:31.41, respectively.

Colton Currier, Elijah Schneidewind and Benjamin Zalanka rounded out the UWF lineup on Friday. Currier clocked a 22:58.75, while Schneidewind and Zalanka ran a 23:18.13 and a 23:42.33, respectively, in the first races of their collegiate careers.

The Argonauts will have three weeks until their next race, which will be the annual Gulf Coast Stampede on Saturday, September 24, at the Escambia County Equestrian Center. The race is set to start at 7:30 a.m.


Elijah Schneidewind
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9/4/2016

BIO: High School: Qualified for state meet three times as a runner at Niceville HS… Member of district champion team for track and cross country as a senior… Place 3rd in 3,200m in track as a senior… PR of 16:57 in the 5K, has clocked a 2:08 in the 800m… Team captain and All-Area as a junior and senior, and Coach’s Leadership Award winner as a senior.

Personal: Son of Charles and Misti… Has one sibling, Hannah… Enjoys volunteering at mission trips, playing soccer, basketball, football, hallway baseball, kickball, ultimate frisbee, disc golf, skiing, and volleyball… Member of National Honor Society, FCA, KEY Club and Leadership Club.


Niceville five ink futures in college athletics
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Daily News

4/20/2016

NICK TOMECEK | Daily News

NICEVILLE -- David Gauch summed Kevin Greene's presence for the Niceville football program best. "You don't get the opportunity to be coached by a Hall of Famer too often," the senior said while sitting at the signing table Wednesday inside the school cafeteria.

Also not happening often is having a NFL Hall of Famer as your dad as well as your high school coach. So, consider Gavin Greene especially lucky. He joined four of his classmates -- Gauch (DePauw University, football), Kyree Taylor (Brenau University, soccer), Elijah Schneidewind (University of West Florida, cross country) and Claudia Howes (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, cross country and track and field) -- for another reason to be thankful, committing to continue their chose sports at the collegiate level.

Gavin Greene will be a preferred walk-on at the University of Southern Miss, a Division I program that must have liked what the Niceville defensive end offered. Being the son of a legendary pro linebacker might have helped. "I'm proud of my son whether he plays football or not," said Kevin Greene, an assistant this past season for Niceville's football program. "I'm happy for the amazing heart he has and being a believer in Christ. I was just out there playing with my son. Any dad would want that. Coach (John) Hicks blessed me with the opportunity to play with my son."
Hicks described the joy of watching the Greene pair each day at practice -- "they were out there having the time of their lives" -- and got a lot out of him on game nights, too. Greene made 118 tackles, 19 for a loss, to go with five sacks. "Outright, this was my favorite year," said Gavin, whose family moved from Green Bay, Wisc., to Niceville his sophomore year. "It was an amazing experience." Greene always had confidence he'd be a college player.

Gauch, a linebacker, wasn't so sure. Injuries derailed his entire junior season. His senior year, though, included 81 tackles, 11 for a loss, and 6.5 sacks. "After last year," said Gauch, who is going to the Division III school with academic grants covering most of the costs, "I didn't think I'd be able to keep playing. After looking over game film from this last season, I decided I really wanted to do it. Not many get the chance."
That was a common theme Wednesday, when Taylor committed to Brenau, in Gainesville, Ga., after another successful year at striker for the Eagles' state runner-up girls soccer program. "I had a big connection with the coaches," she said, noting she's receiving academic grants in addition to the athletic one. "Gainesville reminded me of Niceville. I wanted to go some place smaller. "Last year, I went through this stint where I was hesitant (about if I could play in college). I was scared to grow up, basically."

As for the two running stars, both stressed academic influences for their choices. Schneidewind aims for the Physical Therapy career and a seven-year doctorate program through West Florida and University of South Florida. The running is just a continued love, expressed by coach Jamie LaFollette. "Elijah is the type of athlete who when I say, 'Today we're going to do 10 miles,' he says, 'OK.' If I say we're going to do a tempo run, he says OK. It's always yes and yes sir." That is part of the reason why he can handle the rigors of college athletics and high academic dreams. "I pushed myself so much in high school with clubs and taking classes at Northwest Florida State," he said.

Then there is Howes, who has already lived one of the most interesting lives possible for a teenager. She lived in Italy for more than half a decade, traveled Europe and moved to the Emerald Coast halfway through high school. "It wasn't a whole lot different because I went to an American school," she said. "It is a change going to malls and stores and asking for things in English instead of a different language."
Now she's headed to Troy, N.Y. for Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute -- declining offers from George Washington and other high-ranking academic colleges -- for the Biophysics program. Like Schneidewind, she'll keep running. "I liked that the runners there are around the same times as me," she said. "That will push me to keep getting faster."