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Lebel signs

University of Redlands has been successful in track/cross country

POSTED: July 6, 2008 5:03 a.m.
Michele Hester/

Recent Dawson County High School graduate Katie Lebel signed a scholarship to run at the University of Redlands in California at Dawson County High School, last Thursday. Lebel plans to study art and education at the school.

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Dawson County High School 2008 graduate and cross country and track standout Katie Lebel signed a cross country/track scholarship with the University of Redlands in Redlands, Calif., last Thursday.
The University of Redlands is a Division III institution and has been a very successful program in both track and cross country. The Bulldogs compete in the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC).
Redlands is located about an hour east of Los Angeles and about 35 miles from Palm Springs.
Lebel will have her school paid for due to her academic success at Dawson County High School. Division III athletic programs are not allowed by the NCAA to give any financial help to its athletes. Lebel plans to study art and education at the University.
A three-sport star at Dawson County in cross-country, basketball and track, Lebel received several awards during her career.
In cross-country Lebel ran for coaches Brian DeRose, Chris Lundy and George Graves. Lebel finished ninth in the Region 8-AA meet held at Oglethorpe County High School with a time of 22:42.09 and 41st overall in the state of Georgia with a time of 22:27.39 at the state meet in Carrollton.
She was presented the Lady Tiger award by the coaching staff last season.
Dawson County High School head basketball coach Steve Sweat presented Lebel with the Coaches Award at the basketball banquet held in March. She was the second leading scorer on the team and made the 8-AA All-Region team.
Lebel was the MVP in track for head coach Arron Haynes. She participated in several events and holds the school record for the mile.
"Katie has been in our program for four years and has been very successful," said Haynes. "Katie will be an asset to their program. She is going to be good at anything she attempts."
The track program at Redlands finished ninth in the nation at the D-III meet held last weekend. Track has had seven individual national champions over the last three years. The team has competed in several national meets over the last few years as well.
Redland's cross-country program has a relatively young team, according to head coach Aaron Olswanger. "We have a lot of young talent and should be very successful over the next few years. Katie will be a big part of our young team." Olswanger is also an assistant on the track team.
"We are excited about having Katie join our program," said Olswanger. "Katie will be a positive influence in our program. She is a little underdeveloped in her training, but we are excited about the potential she can have on our team. Katie comes from a great family and her grandparents live close to campus in Big Bear which is just north of here."
Lebel's mother, Jennifer Kruse, is also very proud of her daughter. Kruse said that Katie looked at several schools, which included Roanoke in Virginia and the University of Colorado in Boulder before deciding on Redlands.
Lebel's brother Chris currently plays football at Colgate University in New York.
Katie couldn't be reached for comment due to a mission trip to Colorado.
 

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