|Alma Mater:||UW-Whitewater 1993|
Steve Travis is in his 20th season as head coach of the Wisconsin Lutheran College men's and women's track & field programs. He also handles the head coaching duties for the cross country teams during the fall.
This year marks the ninth year that Travis has been working in the athletic department full-time after serving 11 years as a residential life counselor on campus. Travis joined the Warriors in August 1993, working as coach of the cross country club team before the program gained intercollegiate status in 1994. He is the only head coach in WLC's intercollegiate track & field programs' history since it began in the spring of 1994.
Both programs have enjoyed immense success on individual and team levels. In track & field, the Warriors have established 20 or more school records – indoors and outdoors combined – during seven of the past eight seasons.
Last season Travis coached three freshmen to Northern Athletics Conference Freshman of the Year honors as Travis Turnquist won the men's award, while Zakkiyya Jones and Amanda Markham shared the honors on the women's side.
The 2012 season also saw Travis guide the women's track and field team to a 2nd place finish at the NAC Indoor Championships and a 3rd place finish at the outdoor championships. On the men's side, Travis played a role in helping Travis Turnquist finish with the 23rd fastest 400-meter dash time in the country. Turnquist ran the race in 48.24 seconds, a time that ranked in second among freshman across the nation.
In addition to the Warriors success in meets last season, Travis' teams also succeeded in the classroom. Jenny Ebeling and Travis Turnquist eached were named USTFCCCA All-Academic Honorees, while the entire women's team earned All-Academic status. The Warriors women's team ranked tops in the NAC when it came to cumulative GPA.
In 2010, Travis mentored Dominique Johnson who became the first student-athlete in WLC track & field history to qualify for the NCAA Championships. Johnson placed 10th of 14 in the triple jump at the indoor championship, before returning to the outdoor championship and finishing one spot shy (ninth) of earning All-America honors in the same event.
The 2010 season marked the first time that a Warriors women's cross country student-athlete qualified for the NCAA Division III Cross Country Championship. Junior Katie Schommer, who has earned NAC Runner of the Year honors each of the past two seasons, placed 47th out of 279 at the event. Schommer's time at the NCAA Midwest Regional (21:49.6) was the fastest 6K time in conference history. She also set a NAC Championship record with her time of 22:23.4.
Two years prior in 2008, Zach Shiels became the first runner in Wisconsin Lutheran men's cross country history to qualify for the NCAA Division III Championship, placing 24th overall in a field of 280 runners at the NCAA Division III Midwest Regional. This fall (2012), Travis coached the Warriors women to a 21st-place finish at the Midwest Regional, the highest finish ever by the Warriors at the regional.
The men's and women's cross country teams each finished second during the 2005 Lake Michigan Conference Championships, the best finish ever for the men after having finished third in each of the previous seven seasons. The women posted no lower than a second-place finish in the LMC for six straight seasons (2000-05). Travis, who coached the women's team to LMC titles in 2002 and 2004, was named LMC Coach of the Year each of those years.
Individually, Travis has coached five conference champions in cross country. Marya Haegler (2012), Katie Schommer (2011, 2010), Zach Shiels (2008), Tim Koepsell (2002, 2003, 2005), who was the first male student-athlete in LMC cross country history to win three titles, and Rebecca Porinsky (2001).
A 1993 graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, Travis earned his degree in physical education with an emphasis in corporate fitness. He started his collegiate athletic career as a wide receiver for two seasons with the Warhawks football team before turning his focus to the track as a middle distance runner where he was a three-time All-American. In 1992, Travis won the 800-meter title during the NCAA Division III Track & Field Championships held at Colby College (Maine) with a time of 1:50.68. Travis was inducted into the UWW Athletic Hall of Fame on October 25, 2008.
After college, he competed for five years as a track club member at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Travis was invited to race at the Kansas Relays three times (best showing a third-place finish in the 800 meters in 1996) and the Drake Relays once (a seventh-place finish in 1998). He also raced in the 800-meter qualifying open three times at the Mt. Sac Relays in California.
In 1998, Travis placed seventh at the 1998 U.S. Indoor Championships with an 800-meter time of 1:49.44. That same year he posted his best 800-meter time of 1:48.81 while racing outdoors at Georgia Tech.
A member of the USTFCCA Awards Sub Committee and the Wisconsin Cross Country Coaches Association, Travis was born August 4, 1969, in Mobridge, S.D. He currently resides in Wauwatosa, Wis.