Dec. 9, 2004
TEMPE, Ariz. - The Arizona State University cross country program celebrated its highly successful season Dec. 2 as both the men's and women's teams gathered for their annual awards banquet. In all, eight awards were handed out, four for each gender, with each award being earned by a different student-athlete.
Amy Hastings (Jr., Leavenworth, Kan.) and Aaron Aguayo (Jr., Phoenix, Ariz.) were selected as the Women's and Men's Most Valuable Athletes, respectively, for their outstanding performances in the 2004 season. Hastings won a pair of races on the year, including the Pac-10 Championships, to tie the school record for wins in a career at four. Her conference championship crown was the first individual or team title won for ASU cross country in the history of the program. The NCAA West Region runner-up, Hastings finished 22nd at the NCAA Championships to earn her second All-America honor while pacing the women to a ninth-place finish.
Aguayo led the Sun Devil men to a second place finish at both the Pac-10 Championships and NCAA West Region and individually placing third and fourth, respectively. The team's runner-up finish at the regional gave the Sun Devils their first automatic berth into the NCAA Championships, were ASU finished a school-record eighth overall while Aguayo captured 22nd and his first All-American accolade.
Victoria Jackson (Lake Bluff, Ill.), a graduate student, and Joey Heller (Phoenix, Ariz.), a true freshman, were selected as the Women's and Men's Newcomers of the Year, respectively. Jackson, who attained her undergraduate degree from North Carolina, transferred to ASU over the summer and made an immediate impact on the team, finishing primarily as the team's third or fourth runner in every race of the season. She finished ninth at the conference meet before earning all-region honors by placing sixth at the west regional. Heller, a local product, provided a spark for the team, entering four races on the season and placing among the Top 7 on the team in each run. He capped his season in 55th place at the Pac-10 Championships.
Cassie Rios (Fr., Phoenix, Ariz.) and Ryan Warrenburg (Jr., Franklin, Ind.) were chosen as the Women's and Men's Most Improved Athletes, respectively, this season. Rios, in her first year competing for the Sun Devils following a redshirt season one year ago, added depth to the women's squad and competed for the team in each of its seven races on the year. She opened the year with a ninth-place finish at the Dave Murray Invitational before placing in the Top 30 at the conference meet. Warrenburg put together a solid season, improving his times across the board and finishing higher in each race run in 2004 compared to 2003. At the Pac-10 meet, he finished 14th (31st last year) and then earned all-region honors by placing 25th (31st a year ago) at the regional meet. In his first NCAA Championship meet, he finished 69th overall and third on the team.
A pair of seniors were named the winners of the Coaches Award as Desiree Davila (Chula Vista, Calif.) and Juan Reyes (Phoenix, Ariz.) were honored. Davila, a consistent runner and scorer for the Sun Devils, finished second on the team in every race on the season and earned first-team all-conference honors by placing fifth in the race. She earned all-region honors by placing fourth in race before taking 41st at the national meet. Reyes, who has been hampered by injuries throughout his career, rebounded nicely in 2004, including finishing second on the team at nationals after taking seventh in the region and 18th at the Pac-10 meet.