Buerkle tabbed USTFCCCA Central Region Female Track Athlete of the Year
Friday, May 20, 2011
Buerkle tabbed USTFCCCA Central Region Female Track Athlete of the Year
NEW ORLEANS -- Bemidji State University senior sprinter Kristi Buerkle (Stacy, Minn.), has been named Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) 2011 Central Region Female Track Athlete of the Year. The announcement came in a release from the organization today.

Buerkle is among a field of 32 student-athletes and coaches hailing from the country’s eight regions that will be honored at an USTFCCCA banquet held in conjunction with the NCAA Division II Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Turlock, Calif. May 26-28.  

Buerkle is coming off a pair of Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC) championship performances last weekend.  She captured the 200-meter title with a time of 24.22 seconds, breaking her own school record (24.46) in the process.  She followed that by successfully defending her conference outdoor 400-meter dash crown breaking the tape in 56.09 seconds.  Her time fell just short of her season-best time of 54.66 seconds posted April 28.  In addition she anchored the BSU 4-by-400-meter relay team to All-NSIC Honorable Mention status with a second-place finish.

Buerkle is automatically qualified for the NCAA Championships in 400-meter dash, ranking fourth in the country as well as provisionally qualifying and has been accepted to compete in the 200-meter dash.

Wrapping up her collegiate career at the championships, Buerkle will leave BSU as one of its most decorated female athletes of all time. In addition to her newly-established outdoor 200-meter standard, the five-time All-America performer also owns the BSU outdoor 400-meter record (53.85) and was a member of the school-record holding 4-by-100-meter relay team (48.90).  Indoors, she holds BSU records at the  60-meter, 200-meter (24.94), 300-meter (40.25), 400-meter (54.76), 600-meter (1:36.53) and 800-meter (2:19.11) distances and ran the anchor leg of BSU’s top 4x400-meter relay team (3:59.95).  She is a five-time NSIC champion, two-time USTFCCCA All-Central Region selection, a former NSIC Female Track Athlete of the Year and is a two-time BSU Student Athlete of the Year.

In the classroom Buerkle has been equally as successful.  In addition to earning Academic All-NSIC honors on nine occasions, she has earned recognition from the USTFCCCA as an All-Academic individual and as a member of multiple All-Academic Teams and was a 2010 ESPN the Magazine/CoSIDA Academic All-District V pick.

Buerkle headlines a trio of Bemidji State athletes participating in the 2011 NCAA Division II Outdoor Track and Field Championships.  She will be joined by Raphael Gelo (So., Kabetogama, Minn.), who will be participating in the pole vault, and decathlon participant Tandy Juell (So., Redwood Falls, Minn.)

The NCAA Division II Championships will take place May 26-28 at California State University, Stanisaus’ Al Brenda Track Facility in Turlock, Calif.