Zill boosts track and field/cross country coaching staff

The Lawrence cross country team opens its season Sept. 2 with new full-time assistant coach Lisha Zill on the staff.
The Lawrence cross country team opens its season Sept. 2 with new full-time assistant coach Lisha Zill on the staff.

APPLETON, Wis. -- The Lawrence University track and field and cross country teams took a step forward with the hiring of Lisha Zill as the programs' first full-time assistant coach.

The elevation of Zill, who has been working with the track and field teams on a part-time basis over the past two seasons, was announced today by Director of Athletics Christyn Abaray.

"Having worked with our track and field programs for the past two years in a part-time capacity, Lisha provides not only continuity for our current student-athletes but can also more readily infuse her knowledge, insight and enthusiasm into the programs with her familiarity," Abaray said. "With Head Coach Jason Fast at the lead and Lisha in her new role, we are excited to see even more growth and development of our programs." 

Lawrence captured four individual track titles this season and had the men's cross country champion last fall.

"I am truly honored to continue my coaching career with Lawrence track and field and cross country," Zill said. "I am excited to grow the program and bring a national-caliber mindset to the programs every day."

Zill, who also was working as a lecturer in kinesiology at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, coached at a pair of Wisconsin colleges before joining the Lawrence staff. She served as the graduate assistant cross country and track coach at Cardinal Stritch University for two years. She earned a master's degree in sport management from Cardinal Stritch in 2015. Zill also worked as an assistant track coach at the Milwaukee School of Engineering.

"We are very excited to add Lisha to our staff full-time," Lawrence Head Cross Country and Track and Field Coach Jason Fast said. "She brings a wealth of experience and a great work ethic, and that will be a huge benefit to the student-athletes in the track and field and cross country programs."

A native of Clintonville, Wis., Zill is a 2008 graduate of Clintonville High School, where she was a track and field athlete. Zill put together a stellar collegiate career at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh, where she earned a bachelor's degree in kinesiology in 2012.

A four-year track and field athlete at UW-Oshkosh, Zill was a NCAA Division III All-American in the pole vault and the 4x400-meter relay. Zill was a member of the Titans' teams that swept the indoor and outdoor titles at the NCAA Division III Championships in 2011. She also was on three teams that finished as the runners-up at the NCAA Division Championships.

A Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference champion in the 4x400 relay, Zill was a member of three league championship teams. She helped the Titans win the WIAC team title indoors in 2011 and 2012 and outdoors in 2011.

Lawrence opens its 2017 cross country season at the Tom Barry Invitational in Green Bay on Sept. 2.