Vote for the NAU Student-Athlete of the Week
FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – This week, fans have seven athletes they can choose from for their choice for NAU Student-Athlete of the Week as nominated by the NAU Media Relations office. Fans can vote via the poll question on the nauathletics.com home page, as well as the link above. Voting for the week's nominees will be open until the next poll opens on Monday, but the winner will be selected based on the totals on Thursday morning at 10 a.m. To show respect to the other athletes, we kindly ask to please limit your vote to one per person to ensure fairness and integrity in the poll.
Last week, the women's golf team kicked off a busy week for NAU Athletics by finishing in 14th place at the Wildcat Invitational to begin their 2012 spring season. The men's basketball team was at home for two games, but could not come up with a win despite playing both of their opponents close. On Thursday, the team suffered a 67-49 loss to conference-leading Weber State and then came up short to Idaho State on Saturday, 79-73. The women's basketball team kept up with Big Sky leader Idaho State on Thursday but dropped a 62-54 game on the road, but earned their first road victory of the season on Saturday at Weber State, 85-82. The track and field teams saw school and personal records fall at three separate meets, hosting the NAU Invitational on Saturday and competing on the road in Albuquerque, N.M. at the Don Kirby Invitational and in Seattle, Wash. at the Husky Classic. Finally the men's and women's tennis teams capped off the week, both earning 5-2 victories over Northern Colorado on Saturday in their conference openers. However, both teams could not complete a weekend sweep on Sunday with the men falling 6-1 at Air Force and the women lost a tight match 4-3 at Colorado State.
For the week of February 13, the following seven athletes are your nominees for NAU Student-Athlete of the Week.
Track & Field:
Nicole Elliott – Sr. – Throws – Scottsdale, Ariz.
Elliott earned a personal record in the weight throw for the third-consecutive week, having added an astonishing four feet to her best throw in that span. Elliott won the event Saturday at the NAU Invitational with a toss of 64-11.5, putting her four feet ahead of her nearest competitor in the Big Sky Conference, and launching her seven spots higher on the national rankings to 23rd place. Elliott now sits second on NAU's all-time, just six and a half inches behind three-time Olympian Anna Soderberg's 15-year-old record.
Track & Field:
Diego Estrada – Jr. – Distance – Salinas, Calif.
Estrada clinched his third NCAA auto-bid of the season Saturday at the Husky Classic in Seattle, Wash., finishing the 3,000-meter run in a Northern Arizona and Big Sky Conference record time of 7:44.63. Estrada's mark was nearly three seconds faster than previous record-holder and NAU alum David McNeill's time, set in 2010 at the same meet. Estrada currently holds second-fastest time in the nation for the 3K, the third-fastest time in the mile, and the eighth-fastest mark in the 5K.
Durrell Norman – Sr. – Forward – Victorville, Calif.
Norman averaged 13.0 points, 5.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.0 steals and 0.5 blocks in the team's two games last week in 50 minutes off the bench. He shot 53 percent from the field and connected on both of his three-point attempts after entering the week 0-10 from three-point range. Norman was the only Lumberjack to reach double-figure points against Weber State, contributing 11 points, all in the second half. He then added 15 points against Idaho State on 7-of-11 shooting, a season-high for field goals made.
Kaitlen Parsons – So. – Greenacres, Wash.
Parsons led the Lumberjacks in the team's opening tournament at the Wildcats Invitational in Tucson, Ariz., finishing in a tie for 36th. She was tied for 13th following an opening round 74 with three birdies, and ended up with a three-day score of 232 after carding a 74-79-79 in the tournament's three rounds.
Amy Patton – Jr. – Guard – Tempe, Ariz.
Patton averaged 20.5 points, 6.0 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 3.0 steals in two road games. She shot 48.4 percent from the field and 41.7 percent from three-point range while committing just one turnover in 68 minutes played. Patton led the team with 13 points, seven rebounds, two assists and three steals with no turnovers on Thursday at Idaho State. She followed with a game-high 27 points on 10-of-19 shooting, hitting four three-point shots, while adding five rebounds, three assists, three steals and one block to lead the Lumberjacks to a win at Weber State.
Hannah Stone – Fr. – Temecula, Calif.
Stone won both of her singles matches at No. 2 this weekend to extend her personal winning streak to three matches. She was one of five Lumberjacks to win in singles play in Saturday's victory over Northern Colorado in NAU's conference opener, defeating Elizabeth Tapia, 7-6 (7-0), 6-2. On Sunday, she teamed with Johanna Vang to win their team-leading fourth doubles match this season at No. 2, 8-1, in NAU's loss to Colorado State. The win was the pair's third win this season which they dropped two games or less to their opponent. Stone also contributed during singles play, defeating Lauren Mulhern in three sets, 6-3, 3-6, 6-3. Stone's three singles wins ties her for the team-lead.
Shaun Waters – Jr. – Melbourne, Australia
Waters won both of his singles matches at No. 4 this weekend and also claimed his first doubles win of the season in NAU's Big Sky opening victory over Northern Colorado. In Saturday's win over Northern Colorado, Waters and his doubles partner Robin Pezzutto won at No. 1 doubles, 8-5, to help the Lumberjacks take the doubles point. He then went on to defeat Ben Gendron at No. 4 as part of four NAU singles wins on the day. He followed that up with the team's only win on Sunday in their loss to Air Force, defeating Alex Lineberry in three sets despite losing the first set, 2-6, 6-1, 6-3. He now owns a 4-1 singles record and has won four straight singles matches since a loss in the season opener. His four wins are tops on the team.