BELOIT—Beloit College junior Eva Laun-Smith continued her assault on the school’s record books during the 2020 indoor track season and added a pair of All-America honors on Tuesday.
Despite the pandemic cancelling the NCAA Division III Championship meet in March, the national organizations voted to recognize the qualifiers for the meet with All-America honors. As a top eight qualifier in the 60-meter hurdles and long jump, Laun-Smith is now a three-time indoor track and field All-American, the first in program history.
Typically, All-America honors are awarded to student-athletes who score any portion of a team point at the championship meet. The top eight finishers in individual events and members of the top eight relay teams earn team points at the championship.
Due to the cancellation of the Indoor Championship this season, the NCAA and United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association voted to recognize all student-athletes that qualified, declared and were accepted into an individual event or relay.
Laun-Smith was seeded seventh in the 60-meter hurdles after posting a time of 8.80 at the Margaret Bradley Invitational hosted by the University of Chicago earlier this year.
Her highlight of the season, however, came in the long jump leap that secured a gold at the Midwest Conference Indoor Championships. Her recorded distance of 19-feet, 2 inches (5.84 meters) shattered the previous program record, which she had broken on multiple occasions prior, and catapulted her into second in the national rankings in the event.
“Eva has elevated her level of excellence to the highest standard and these two All-American honors are well deserved,” said Head Coach Brian Bliese.
The Beloit Memorial High School graduate continues to enrichen the history of the Bucs track and field program adding upon the legacy built by earlier All-Americans including Shellie Gazdik (2004), Stephanie Muller (2001), Laura Carpenter (1998) and Judy Logback (1995).
Last season, Laun-Smith captured a bronze medal in the triple jump at the D-III Indoor Championship, becoming the first indoor All-American in program history. This season, with the two All-America honors for the 2020 indoor season, Laun-Smith is the sole three-time All-American in program history.
At the conference level, Laun-Smith has won nine medals at indoor championships including seven gold, a silver and one bronze while adding five gold, a silver and bronze in two outdoor championship meets. She is a three-time MWC Outstanding Field Performer of the Meet at indoor championships and currently holds program records in the long jump, triple jump and 60-meter hurdles indoors and the long jump and triple jump outdoors.
Laun-Smith has 16 conference medals, five program records and with her senior season on the horizon, she has staked her claim as the most-decorated Buccaneer in program history.
“The fact that in the past year Eva has earned All-America honors in three different events (triple jump, long jump and 60-meter hurdles) shows how elite of an athlete she is,” added Bliese. “We are so proud of all of her accomplishments.”