McGuirk Named West Region Women's Coach of the Year

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Willamette Head Coach Matt McGuirk has been named 2007 NCAA Division III West Region Women’s Cross Country Coach of the Year, as selected by West Region members of the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA). The Willamette women’s team won the NCAA West Regional title with a score of 43 and took first place by a 43-point margin of victory.

It is the fourth time that McGuirk has been named West Region Women’s Cross Country Coach of the Year. He also was chosen to receive the award in 2004, 2005 and 2006. He has been named West Region Men’s Cross Country Coach of the Year three times, in 2001, 2003 and 2005.

The Willamette women's cross country team, led by defending national champion Sarah Zerzan (Sr., San Carlos, CA/Notre Dame HS), will compete at the NCAA Division III National Championships on Saturday, Nov. 17. In addition to winning the NCAA West Regional title, the Bearcat women's team also claimed the Northwest Conference championship this fall. The Willamette women have won six consecutive NWC titles and five consecutive West Regional crowns.

McGuirk also has led the Willamette men's team to an outstanding season. The Bearcats won the NWC championship and took first place at the NCAA West Regional. Willamette's men's team will join the WU women's squad in participating at the NCAA National Championships this weekend. The Bearcat men's team has won seven consecutive NWC championships and six straight West Regional titles.

Last year, the Willamette women's team placed 20th at the National Championships, while the men's team took 27th. McGuirk guided the Bearcat men's team to its best-ever finish at the National Championships in 2002 and 2004, when WU took fifth place. McGuirk led the WU women's team to its highest-ever finish at the National Championships in 2004, as the Bearcats claimed ninth place.

Matt McGuirk has been named NCAA Division III West Region Women's Coach of the Year for the fourth consecutive season.

Matt McGuirk has been named NCAA Division III West Region Women's Coach of the Year for the fourth consecutive season.