With the 2018 season, Matt Schauf begins his 12th season as head coach for both the UW-Stout men's and women's cross country programs. Schauf is also the distance coach for the Blue Devils' men's and women's track teams. Since the 2010 season, Stout has had at least one individual qualify to the national cross country country championship.
The 2017 men's cross country team matched a school-best finish at the WIAC Cross Country Championship, finishing second, then advanced to the NCAA Division III Cross Country Championship after finishing fifth at the tough NCAA Midwest Regional meet. The team placed 22nd at the national meet. Aleks Ilyushev, Joe Van Grinsven and Tyler Ellefson earned men's All-Region selection and Jessica Petruzates earned women's All-Region selection. Ilyushev was a first team all-WIAC selection, Ellefson and Petruzates second team and Van Grinsven, Dan Ressler, Nick Zolondek and Katie Repka honorable mention.
On the track during the 2018 season, Mike Friedman captured the 10K WIAC title and Jessica Petruzates took a pair of second place outdoor finishes in the 10K and 5K.
The 2016 Blue Devil team sent one runner to the men's cross country national championship and two men and one woman earned all-WIAC honorable mention honors.
The 2015 Blue Devil women's cross country team continued to make marches in the tough WIAC, finishing fourth, marking the fourth consecutive year Stout has improved their finish. The Blue Devils also climbed to a sixth place finish at NCAA Division III Regional meet. Senior Kathleen Thorn put a climax on the year, finishing second at the WIAC Championship, the highest finish ever by a Stout woman. Thorn went on to a fourth place regional finish and earned All-America honors with a seventh place national finish. On the men's side, Tony Carr kept Stout's national qualification string alive when he advanced to the national meet.
After continually sending individuals to the NCAA Division III Cross Country Championship, the 2014 Blue Devils broke through one of the toughest regionals in the country and qualified as a team to the national meet. The advancement was the first time a Stout team qualified to a national meet since the 1986 NAIA Championship and the first Division III Championship since 1981. The Blue Devils qualified as the fifth place team out of regionals and finished 23rd as a team. Patrick Jenkins repeated as an All-American with a 13th place finish. Tony Cass (12th), Jenkins (15th) and Devin Sauvola (17th) placed in the top 20 at the WIAC Championship where Stout finished fifth. On the women's side, Kathleen Thorn, who set a school record in the 6K, and Jordan Kelch became the first Blue Devil women to qualify to the national meet since 1998. At the WIAC Cross Country Championship, Thorn and Kelch earned all-WIAC honors, finishing 13th and 14th, respectively. Jenkins and Paul Van Grinsven earned track All-American honors, with Van Grinsven placing second in the 3000m steeplechase. Jenkins was the WIAC champion in the indoor 3000m, and the outdoor 5000m and 10,000m.
The 2013 season produced a first in UW-Stout's cross country history as Patrick Jenkins and Jessop Keene finished first and second at the WIAC Cross Country Championship. As a team, the Blue Devil men finished fourth at the conference meet, the highest placing since the 1983 season. As a team, Stout ranked nationally as high as 25th and placed eighth at the Midwest Regionals, sending Jenkins and Keene to the national championship, where Jenkins earned All-American honors. The women's team improved three spots at the regional meet. On the track, Jenkins earned three All-America awards and Paul Van Grinsven advanced to the outdoor nationals in the steeplechase.
The 2012 season will always go down as a memorable year in Schauf's coaching career. Schauf was named the WIAC men's cross country coach of the year. Schauf is the first coach in program history to earn the conference award. He led the Blue Devils to a fifth-place finish at the WIAC championship - a three-spot improvement from a season ago. UW-Stout also placed seventh at the Midwest Regional, one of the highest finishes in school history. Tim Nelson successfully defended his WIAC individual title, then went on to take both the Midwest Regional and the NCAA Division III individual crown. Patrick Jenkins also advanced to the national championship, narrowly missing All-America honors in his first year as a Blue Devil.
Before and during the 2011 season, Schauf was instrumental in the development of Nelson, who became UW-Stout's first-ever WIAC champion and went on to finish fourth at the NCAA DIII national cross country championships. Nelson added a national championship during the 2012 indoor track and field season, and two national championship medals during the 2012 outdoor track and field season.
On the women's side in 2011, the Blue Devils placed fifth at the WIAC Cross Country championships, their best finish since 2003, and 10th at the NCAA regional meet, their best team finish since 2006.
During the 2010 season, the Blue Devils sent two runners (Peter Johnston, Tim Nelson) to the NCAA Division III Cross Country Championships, the first time two Stout male runners have advanced to the national cross country meet since the 1970s. Johnston became the first Blue Devil All-American since 1987 when he finished 22nd.
That 2010 cross country championship turned out to a turning point for Nelson. While not earning All-American honors, it was the last time Nelson did not earn All-American honors at a national championships that he attended. Under the tutelage of Schauf, Nelson earned indoor and outdoor All-American honors during the 2011 season, then went on to win the 2011 WIAC Cross Country championship individual title and finish fourth at the 2011 NCAA Division III national championships, Stout's best-ever individual finish. Nelson continued to excel, winning the 2012 Indoor 5000-meter crown and the 5000- and 10,000-meter outdoor national crowns.
Schauf came to the Blue Devils after six seasons (2001-06) as the cross country coach for both boys and girls programs and five seasons (2002-2006) as the boy’s assistant track coach at nearby Boyceville High School. A mathematics teacher in the district's middle school, Schauf calculated the Bulldogs' progressive success. Both programs won the school's first-ever boys and girls conference championships , and the boy’s program twice qualified for the WIAA state championships, finishing third in 2004. The boys team twice qualified to the WIAA state championships, finishing 12th in 2002 and third in 2004. Schauf was named the District 1 Coach of the Year in 2004.
Schauf began his coaching career in 2000 as an assistant cross country coach at Darlington High School.
In 2008, Schauf earned his master’s degree from UW-Stout in Information & Communication Technologies and has been an instructor in the Apparel and Communications Technology department.
Schauf is a native of southwestern Wisconsin and a graduate of UW-Platteville.
With the 2018 season, Kody Zahrte begins his fourth season as a UW-Stout assistant track and field coach, specializing in the throws.
During the 2018 outdoor season, Sam Elsner was selected as the WIAC Field Athlete of the Meet after winning the hammer throw, the discus and finishing sixth in the shot put. The Blue Devil discus crew accounted for 19 team points with Elsner's first place finish, freshman Kevin Ruechel's second place finish and Anton Proksch's eighth place finish. Ruechel also was fifth in the shot put. For the women, Lydia Meier captured the hammer throw championship and Heidi Lieffort was second in the discus and javelin. The women's throws crew accounted for 39 team points at the meet.
During the 2018 indoor season, Sam Elsner was selected the NCAA Division III Field Athlete of the Meet after earning the national shot put title and finishing second in the weight throw. Kayla Pabst finished second nationally in the weight throw. At the WIAC indoor meet, Elsner was selected the WIAC Field Athlete of the Week after winning the shot and finishing second in the weight throw.
During the 2015 season, Austin Zett won the WIAC Outdoor discus crown, setting a school record and finishing second at the NCAA Division III Outdoor Championship in the discus. Zett was selected as the Blue Devils' most valuable field performer. On the women's side, Lydia Meier qualified to the indoor (weight throw) and outdoor national championship (hammer throw, discus) and Michelle Brandt qualified to the indoor national meet (wight throw). Meier qualified nationally indoor in the weight throw and in the discus outdoor. Meier finished runner-up at the WIAC Indoor Championship in the weight throw, third in the outdoor hammer and sixth in the discus. Heidi Leiffort placed seventh in the discus at the WIAC Outdoor Championship.
Zahrte, a native of Black River Falls, Wis., competed four seasons for the Blue Devil track and field team and was a member of the Blue Devil football team as an offensive lineman.
With the 2019 season, Ciara Jarrett begins her first season as a UW-Stout assistant track and field coach and will work primarily with the short sprints.
Prior to coming to UW-Stout, Jarrett served as an assistant track and field coach at St. Cloud State University during the 2017-18 season.
During her college years as a track and field athlete at Youngstown State University, Jarrett enjoyed a very successful career. From being awarded Youngstown State 2013-14 Women’s Vindicator Student-Athlete of the Year, to becoming the first YSU athlete to win the same event four consecutive years at the league championships winning the 200-meter dash. Her leadership since day one at Youngstown was undeniable because she contributed points in her events as a short sprinter and motivated her team to winning three championships.
She built her leadership skills after serving as team captain for two straight seasons and was appointed to represent her team with the SAAC (Student Athletic Advisory Committee) program for two years.
She participated in the NCAA East Preliminary Round in the 200-meter dash...advanced past the first round at the NCAA Prelims with a time of 24.10 seconds, the 18th-best time...in the next round was 21st with a time of 23.94 seconds...had a season-best time of 11.84 seconds in the 100m dash at the Penn Relays...posted a season-best time of 23.78 seconds in the 200m dash at the Sea Ray Relays...finished third in the 100m dash at the Raleigh Relays...placed second in the 200m dash at the Northeast Ohio Invitational...won the 200m dash with a time of 23.78 seconds at the Sea Ray Relays...was third in the 200m dash at the Jesse Owens Classic.
Jarrett is a native of Milwaukee and received her master's in College Counseling and Student Development from St. Cloud State in 2018. She received her bachelor's degree from Youngstown State in Liberal Arts with concentrations in social work and sociology in 2015.
Assistant Track / Cross Country
Emma Berndt begins her first year during the 2018-19 school year as a Blue Devil assistant coach for cross country and an assistant coach for track and field. Berndt will be working with the longer sprints and hurdles for track and field.
Prior to coming to Menomonie, Berndt was an assistant coach for two years with the the Rockford, Ill., University cross country and track & field programs. Berndt was the assistant cross country coach for the CalTech Beavers for the 2015 season in Pasadena, Calif. Prior to her time at CalTech, Berndt spent her entire collegiate career at Benedictine, Ill., University as a member of both the Eagles cross country and track and field teams. In her senior season, Berndt was selected team captain for the Eagles cross country team.
Berndt was also heavily involved on campus as she served four years with the SAAC program, including two years as president, while taking on leadership roles and gaining experience coordinating meets, recruiting and with equipment management. Some of her other activities on campus included spending two years as a teacher's assistant in the Nutrition Department, three years as a Resident Assistant and participating in the Fem Power and Theater clubs. Away from campus, Berndt held internships at ProActive Kids and with LouAnn Chvatal as well as spending a summer studying abroad in London.
Berndt graduated from Benedictine University in 2015 with a Bachelor of Science in Nutrition and a Bachelor of Arts in Exercise Science. She recently completed her work toward her master's in Special Education at Rockford University.