Kent-Strollo's Horizon League Champions
2015 Austin McLean (Indoor) Mile
2015 Austin McLean (Indoor) 3,000-meter run
2015 Eric Rupe (Indoor) 5,000-meter run
2014 Samantha Hamilton (Outdoor) 5,000-meter run and 10,000-meter run
2014 Eric Rupe (Outdoor) 5,000-meter run
2014 Samantha Hamilton (Indoor) 5,000-meter run
2014 Eric Rupe (Indoor) 3,000-meter run and 5,000-meter run
2013 Brittany Stockmaster (Outdoor) Steeplechase
Former Youngstown State track and field/cross country runner Nicole Kent-Strollo serves in two capacities at her alma mater. She was named the Director of Student Outreach and Support for the University in January 2017 following a short stint as YSU's Student-Athlete Wellness and Development Coordinator. She has also been an assistant coach with the track and field and cross country programs since 2012 after previously serving as an adviser and assistant coach in the mid-1990s. During the 2017-2018 campaign, Kent-Strollo moved into an operations role.
A board-certified Nurse Practitioner, NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist and former member of the faculty in YSU's Department of Nursing, Kent-Strollo assists the department with the development and implementation of Student-Athlete Welfare protocols, Individualized Wellness Plans for at risk individuals, departmental community service, outreach and educational programming. Kent-Strollo also serves as the co-adviser for SAAC and FLIGHT. In her role at the University, she works with all YSU students who are in need of assistance and serves as Chair of the YSU CARE Team.
In the past five years, the women's track and field team has won nine conference titles while the women's cross country team has won a pair of crowns. The men have three outdoor crowns (2014, 2016 and 2017), an indoor championship (2016, 2017 and 2018) and three second-place finishes while the men's cross country program claimed their first Horizon League title in 2016.
On the individual level, Kent-Strollo has coached 10 Horizon League champions.
In 2017, Ryan Roush broke the school record in the 10,000m run by 26 seconds. No runner in school history had run under 30:09 in the event and two have done it the past two years (Ryan Sullivan in 2016). In 2018, Sean Peterson became the first YSU runner in school history to win the 800m.
The men claimed the Triple Crown in 2016-17 winning cross country in November, indoor track and February and the outdoor title in May.
In 2015, Austin McLean and Eric Rupe provided a strong 1-2 punch for the men while the women used a veteran lineup to win the cross country title in the fall. At the outdoor meet, Rupe won the steeplechase
with McLean taking second. At the indoor league championships, McLean won the mile and the 3,000 meters while Rupe picked up his second straight win in the 5,000m. Rupe and McLean qualified for the NCAA Preliminary round in the steeplechase for the second straight year. For his efforts during the indoor season, McLean was the Horizon League's Athlete of the Year.
At the league cross country meet, YSU's women won by 13 points with its top five all finishing in the top 26 of the race.
During the 2013-14 year, she helped the Penguins to four team conference titles and two runner-up finishes. The women won all three conference crowns earning the cross country and indoor and outdoor crowns. The men won their first-ever outdoor crown and placed second in the indoor meet and at the cross country championships.
The outdoor season saw three distance runners advance to the NCAA Preliminary round as McLean and Rupe competed in the steeplechase and Samantha Hamilton advanced in the 10,000 meter run. McLean placed 18th in the steeplechase and was just four seconds shy of advancing to the NCAA finals.
At the Horizon League outdoor meet it was McLean and Rupe who clinched the men's title with a one-two finish in the 5,000-meter run during the last individual event. Rupe took first while McLean was second as the duo flipped their finishes in the steeplechase. Hamilton had an outstanding meet winning the 10,000m and the 5,000m. She was named the Athlete of the Year and Runner of the Meet for her efforts.
At the HL Indoor event, Rupe won the 3,000 and 5,000-meter runs becoming just the third Horizon League runner to win both events at the same meet. Rupe was also second in the mile while McLean was a runner-up to Rupe in the 5,000. Hamilton blistered the field in the 5,000-meter run winning by nearly 42 seconds. McKinsie Klim was second and Michelle Klim placed third in the 5,000m giving the Guins the top-three finishers.
At the 2013 Horizon League Cross Country in Boardman, the women won their first-ever league crown. Anna Pompeo was second, Hamilton was fourth and Klim was fifth. Klim was named the Freshman of the Year for her performance. YSU beat UIC by 22 points to claim the title. The men were second, but Rupe became the first YSU male runner to win the individual title. McLean was fifth and Nick Gliha finished 12th.
In 2013, YSU had strong performances in the 3,000-meter, 5,000-meter and steeplechase at both conference meets.
At the outdoor meet, Brittany Stockmaster won the 3,000-meter steeplechase by almost two seconds. McLean and Gliha finished in the top eight in the 5,000m while Monica Ciarniello was eighth in the event. In the 10,000m, Gliha was fourth for the men while Katie Heney was seventh for the women. At the indoor meet, Pompeo was fourth in the 3,000-meter run and 5,000m runs.
Additionally, the women's cross country team placed third in the fall of 2012.
Prior to rejoining YSU's staff, Kent-Strollo established and coached various teams at the elementary, middle and high school levels while working in private practice as a nurse practitioner.
She was a four-year letterwinner at YSU from 1989-94 for the cross country and track and field programs, serving as a captain for both teams her senior campaign. Coach Kent-Strollo earned her BSN degree from YSU in 1994 and received her MSN/NP degree from Kent State in 2002. She is currently pursuing her Doctorate in Educational Leadership/Student Personnel Services from the University of the Cumberlands in Williamsburg, Kentucky. Her proposed dissertation will look at mental health issues in student-athletes.
Nicole, and her husband Ron, reside in Austintown. They have two children, Ryan and Rachel. Ryan is a former YSU student-athlete and recent graduate while Rachel is a psychology major at Youngstown State.