Athletics star honoured by American university
Former South Canterbury athletics star Rowena Welford Morton has been inducted into her American college's 'Hall of Honour'.
Morton was given the prestigious honour from Texas' Wayland Baptist University and was delighted.
"It is a huge honour. I was shocked as I graduated with several excellent athletes," she said.
At her time at Wayland, Morton was 15 time all-American and a two time National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics, All American scholar athlete from 1993-96.
She specialised in the long jump, triple jump and sprint hurdle events and helped Wayland to the indoor national championship in 1994.
Morton holds the university's records in the 100m hurdes (13.53s) and 55m hurdles (8.09s).
The talented all-rounder said her biggest achievement for the university was winning the indoor national long jump title in 1994 and the outdoor title in 1996.
Morton then became the assistant track coach at the university.
During this time her husband Billy drove eight hours across Texas to El Paso for her to be able to attend a meeting to qualify for the 1998 Commonwealth Games.
Morton rates that as one of two overall highlights as well as competing at them in the 100m hurdles. She also held the New Zealand 100m hurdles record of 13.42s for a decade.
Prior to getting the athletics scholarship to Wayland in 1992, the former Craighead student received the "Most Promising Young Sports Person" award at the annual South Canterbury Sports Awards.
Morton lives in White Oak, Texas, where her husband is from and the couple have two girls Makana, 12, and Piper, 9. She will graduate with a Doctor of Pharmacy degree next May, having studied for five years while working.
The 39-year-old said she still runs for fitness and is teaching her two girls, while as a family they play softball.
- © Fairfax NZ News