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Duke Athletics | August 6, 2014

Engel named head women's cross country coach at Duke

Christine Engel
DURHAM, N.C. -- Christine Engel has been named Duke’s head women’s cross country coach and assistant track & field coach, as announced Wednesday by vice president and director of athletics Kevin White.

“We are absolutely thrilled to welcome Christine to the Duke family,” Duke deputy director of athletics, administration, legal affairs and chief of staff Nina King said. “Given her background and experience, her passion and knowledge for the sport, as well as her commitment to the total student-athlete, Christine is an excellent addition to the program and will certainly enjoy great success here at Duke.”

Engel brings a wealth of coaching experience to the Duke women’s cross country team. During the past six years, Engel held the position of head men’s and women’s cross country coach and assistant women’s track & field coach at Elon. During her tenure at Elon, Engel coached four Southern Conference individual champions and two NCAA East preliminary round qualifiers. Engel also helped guide 24 different student-athletes to 75 All-Southern Conference honors.

Most recently, Engel guided the Elon women’s cross country team to a second-place finish at the 2013 Southern Conference Championships with five runners earning all-conference honors at the competition.

During the 2014 indoor track season, with Engel coaching, four school records fell for the women’s distance team. The 2014 outdoor season saw an Elon student-athlete claim the Southern Conference 3,000-meter steeplechase title with two additional records falling during the season.

Overall, 17 of Elon’s top-20 all-time 5K performances and 16 of the school’s top-20 all-time 6K performances came during Engel’s tenure. Additionally on the track, school records fell in the indoor 800, 1,000, one mile, 3,000, 5,000 and distance medley relay, while outdoor school records in the 800, 3,000, 5,000, 10,000 and 3,000 steeplechase all were set with Engel as the coach.

“Christine Engel has been an outstanding leader and mentor to our student-athletes during her time at Elon,” Elon director of athletics Dave Blank said. “Christine has helped our cross country program achieve great success both athletically and academically over the last several years and has had a tremendous impact on the student-athletes she has coached.

Prior to her coaching stint at Elon, Engel held the position of assistant cross country and track & field coach at Columbia and spent three years as the assistant men’s and women’s cross country and track & field coach at San Francisco.

In addition to her college coaching experience, Engel also helped qualify six runners for the 2008 Olympic trials in the marathon, serving as a coach of the Impala Racing Team, an all-women’s club team. Engel’s coaching résumé also includes three years as the head cross country and track & field coach at West Morris Central High School in Chester, New Jersey.

“Christine has experience at so many of the things we consider important here at Duke,” Duke director of track & field Norm Ogilvie said. “[She has] experience as an All-ACC athlete, a high school coach and a decade of coaching experience at the Division I level. With stints at Elon and Columbia, she understands recruiting high-caliber student-athletes. Perhaps most importantly, she has a great passion for Duke and is here to win championships.”

In addition to her coaching experience, Engel also proved to be a standout member of Clemson’s track & field team, earning All-ACC honors twice, including a conference championship title as a member of Clemson’s distance medley relay. Engel also served as a leg on Clemson’s school-record-setting 4x800, distance medley relay and 4x1,500m relay. Clemson recognized Engel’s extraordinary efforts as a student-athlete by naming her to the Clemson University Athletic Wall of Fame.

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