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Director's Column




Six Leathernecks Earn All-League Recognition

BaseballFighting Leatherneck baseball had a record six players named All-League, as announced Wednesday (May 21) at the Summit League Baseball Championship banquet in Sioux Falls. Tanner Glore, Neil DeCook and Tyler Willman were tabbed First Team All-League, while Jameson Henning, Zack Burling and JJ Reimer earned Second Team honors.

The six players named All-League is a new program record, topping the old mark of five All-Conference selections from both 1994 and 2006.

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Allen Kohn Hired as Assistant Director of Academic Services

Allen KohnWestern Illinois announced Tuesday (May 20) that Allen Kohn joined the Fighting Leatherneck staff as the Assistant Director of Academic Services and the Life Skills Coordinator.

"I'm very excited to work with the staff and student-athletes here at Western Illinois," Kohn (pronounced CON) said. "Western Illinois has a great reputation and an outstanding Athletics Director in Tommy Bell. I'd like to thank Lisa Melz-Jennings and the committee for this opportunity. I hope to prepare the student-athletes here at Western for life beyond college athletics and to make sure they get the most out of their time here in Macomb."

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Track & Field Trio Win Summit League Titles

A trio of Leathernecks won titles as Western Illinois track & field wrapped up competition at the 2014 Summit League Championships at Ellig Sports Complex on Saturday (May 17).

The Western Illinois men finished the meet in fourth place, while the women finished fifth.

Glenn Powell, Xavier Levy and Justin Kilpatrick each won conference crowns to lead the way for the Leathernecks.

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Marshall, Walsh Named All-Region by the NFCA

Western Illinois' Sammy Marshall and Teagan Walsh have been named to All-Region Teams by the NFCA on Thursday (May 15). Marshall was named Second Team All-Region while Walsh was named Third Team All-Region.

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Spring Commencement Features 63 Student-Athletes

Spring 2014 Graduates

A total of 63 Leatherneck student-athletes earned undergraduate or graduate degrees this spring as commencement began Friday (May 9) inside Western Hall on the campus of Western Illinois University.

"Athletics at Western has excelled in academic excellence which is one of the four core values of the university," said Director of Athletics Tommy Bell. "Congratulations to our recent graduates, the entire department is proud of their accomplishments and we wish them all the best in their future endeavors."

Mackenzie Gray (Chemistry), Heather Smith (Marketing) and Hannah Van Eendenburg were named Departmental Scholars.

Gray (W. Track), Rebecca Henricson (W. Basketball), Chelsea Lynes (W. Track) and Jordan Spaciel (W. Soccer) were named Commencement Marshals and will guide the fellow graduates and faculty from processional to recessional.

Becker (W. Soccer), Dan Bidle (M. Golf), Andrew Hood (M. Track) and Nathaniel Marshall (M. Track) will graduate with Cum Laude honors.

Abby Davis (W. Soccer), Brett Furmanski (M. Tennis), Matt Leal (M. Track), Smith (Volleyball) and Van Eendenburg (W. Soccer) will graduate with Magna Cum Laude honors.

Gray (W. Track), Henricson (W. Basketball), Jimmy Holtschlag (Football), Lynes (W. Track) and Spaciel (W. Soccer) will graduate with Summa Cum Laude honors.

Becker (W. Soccer), Jessica Callahan (W. Tennis), Abby Davis (W. Soccer) and Van Eendenburg (W. Soccer) will also graduate as Honors Scholars through Western Illinois' Centennial Honors College.

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Lynes, Holtschlag Earn Senior Student-Athlete of the Year Award

Top Athletes for the Year

Western Illinois seniors Chelsea Lynes (Woodstock, Ontario) and Jimmy Holtschlag (Quincy, IL) earned the Athletics Department top honor, being named Senior Female and Male Student-Athlete of the Year, respectively, on Thursday night (May 1).

They were honored as part of The WESPYS, an inaugural banquet honoring the athletic and academic achievements by Leatherneck student-athletes during the 2013-14 season. The banquet, sponsored by McDonough Telephone Cooperative, was held inside Western Hall. More than 500 people were in attendance.

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Restore the Glory- Leatherneck Club Approaches 600 Members

The WIU Athletics "Restore the Glory" annual fund drive continues, and nearly 200 new members have joined the Leatherneck Club over the past two months. The goal is to reach 750 members by June 30.

"We've been thrilled with the response, and would like to thank our loyal Leatherneck supporters," said Assistant Director of Athletics Michael Jones. "We have one month to hit our goal of 750 members, and I would strongly encourage everyone to participate. There are tremendous benefits associated with being a member of the Leatherneck Club, none greater than knowing you are helping our student-athletes succeed."

Founded in 1971, the Leatherneck Club is the primary fundraising program of Western Illinois University Athletics. It provides annual funding for more than 430 deserving student-athletes.

Those wanting to join the Leatherneck Club can sign up online at or call (309) 298-1190. Membership benefits begin at just $50 and increase with gift level.

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