Track and Field Announces Incoming Recruiting Class

June 20, 2013

CHICAGO – An influx of talented and versatile student-athletes in the recruiting class of 2013 has DePaul track and field coach Dave Dopek optimistic about the upcoming season.

It’s the third consecutive year that Dopek and his staff have enhanced the program with college prospects ready to make an immediate impact.

“This is a very complete recruiting class, particularly with the women,” Dopek said. “We are bringing in three distance runners, one mid-distance athlete, one short sprinter, two jumpers and a thrower who will strengthen us in three events.

“We’re bringing in a lot of state champions and athletes with outstanding performances. It’s a really talented group to combine with this past year’s freshman class. In fact, our last three recruiting classes have been pretty talented.

“Without question, this has been a solid three-year run with recruits. We’re bringing in the kind of quality and depth that will allow us to really step up as a program.”

Since becoming head coach of track & field and cross country in the 2010-11 season, Dopek has strived to upgrade both programs.

“The last three years, we’ve been recruiting to compete with the quality of the BIG EAST Conference,” Dopek said. “We needed to upgrade ourselves in many different event groups.

“In doing so, we have put ourselves in a good position. When these talented young ladies from the class of 2013 come into our program, I am expecting a lot of individual and team success.

“With everything we’ve added to the program these last three recruiting cycles, I don’t see how we cannot elevate our status in the conference/region. I am excited to see this new class of student-athletes merge with our existing team and produce some great results. We’re getting closer to having the type of athlete and the kind of program that I envisioned.”



Here is a rundown on the Blue Demons class of 2013.

Courtney Tedeschi, Berne-Knox- Westerlo, Westerlo, N.Y.: State champion in the 2,000-meter steeplechase who also finished 13th at the New Balance Nationals. As a junior, she won the 1,500m, 3,000m and the 2,000m steeplechase on the same day at the New York Section 2 Class C  Championships. In cross country, Tedeschi was fifth at the New York Division 2 State Championships and won three major invitationals.  She has personal records (PRs) of 2:16 (800m), 4:45 (1500m), 5:06 (1600m), 10:28 (3000m) and 7:00.29 (2000m Steeplechase).

Shianne Baggett, Whitney Young: The Public League champion in the 800m went on to finish fourth in that event at the Class 3A state meet. She had come in 11th in the 800m as a junior. After winning the Public League meet, Baggett went on to claim the St. Ignatius sectional title in the 800m. She has PRs of 2:13.57 (800m); 57.87 (400m); 5:20.99 (1600m).

Stephanie Saey, Galesburg: Two-time All-State selection in outdoor track who was fifth at the state meet in the 3,200m and seventh in the 1,600m. She was All-State as a sophomore in the 3,200m, sectional and Western Big 6 champion in the 3,200m and conference runner-up in the 1,600m. In cross country, Saey was a state runner-up in 2012. She won her regional meet by 20 seconds and the sectional meet by 10 seconds. She has PRs of 5:08 at 1600m and 11:03 in the 3200m.

Paige Skorseth, River Falls (Wis.): She won the 1,500m at the USATF Championships in Wisconsin and was the USATF regional champion in the 1,500m and 3,000m. She holds PRs of 5:16 for 1600m and 11:29 for 3200m. Skorseth was the AAU Cross Country national champion in 2011 and third in 2012. This three-time cross country All-State athlete was also a First Team, All-State gymnast three years in a row and led River Falls High School to the state title in 2010.

Alex Campanella, Eldred, Glen Spey, N.Y.: This two-time conference champion in the 1,600m and 3,200m was also the New York State Class D runner-up in cross country in 2011 and finished third in 2012. He was a four-time state qualifier and the New York Section 9 champion. Campanella holds PRs of 4:21 in the mile and 9:30 for the two-mile indoors.

Scott Arsenault, Billerica Memorial, Billerica, Mass.: The mid-distance standout finished third at the MIAA Eastern Massachusetts Division I Championships in the 800m and won that event at the Merrimack Valley Conference Meet. A year earlier he won 1,000m at the conference meet. The 2013 Dartmouth Relays champion in the 1,000m also anchored the 4x800m relay team that was second at the state meet. Arsenault comes to Lincoln Park with PRs of 1:55.46 (800m); 2:30.75 (1000m); 4:24.82 (1600m); 1:23.4 (600m).

Corinne Franz, Madison Memorial, Madison, Wis.: Two-time state champion recorded PRs of 148 feet, 7 inches in the discus (conference and school record) and 38-9 in the shot put. She was All-State three times, three-time Big 8 Conference champion and four-time Madison city meet champion and also set the city record in the discus.

Trevor Kintyhtt, Orange Park, Orange Park, Fla.: Twice a state runner-up and once a third-place medalist, he has a high school PR of 176-9 in the discus. Kintyhtt was a four-time district and conference champion in the discus. He was also a two-time, first-team, all-conference selection in basketball and a three-star recruit in football. Kintyhtt won the U.S. Marine Corps Distinguished Athlete Award at Orange Park High School.

MaShayla Kirksy, Walther Lutheran, Melrose Park, Ill.: A two-time IHSA 2A State Champion in the Women's Long Jump, Kirksy was also a nine-time All-State performer in the triple and long jump as well as the 4x100 relay. She helped lead her team to three consecutive second-place finishes at the IHSA girls state meet and was a 2012 USATF Junior Olympic National Champion in Long Jump (Young Women's Division).

Gabrielle Howard, Bishop Lynch, Dallas, Texas: A three-time 5A TAPPS (Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools) State Champion in the triple jump, Howard helped lead her Team to the 2013 TAPPS 5A state championship. At the meet, she placed first in the triple jump, second in the 4x100 meter relay and third in the long jump. She is also the niece of DePaul Hall of Fame basketball player, Stephen Howard.

Shayna Nwokenkwo, Homewood Flossmoor, Flossmoor, Ill.: A talented sprinter, Nwokenkwo placed third in both the 100 meter and 4x100 at the IHSA 3A State Championships. She also placed second in the 60m dash at the Illinois Prep Top Times Indoor Meet.

Chaz Bottoms III, Benedictine, Cleveland, Ohio: One of the top 400m runners in Ohio, Chaz will bring 400/800m talent as well as a strong work ethic that should provide greater depth to the quarter-mile group. Bottoms was a 2013 Perry District 400m champion and 2013 Region 5 400m champion.

Xavier Jones, Ragsdale, Jamestown N.C.: A capable sprinter with excellent range and a chance to be highly competitive in the 100-400m races. Jones placed third in the 400m, fifth in the 200m and was a finalist in the 100m at the NCHSAA 4A State Championships.


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