DENVER - Idaho track and field athletes Jonathan Marler and Allix Lee-Painter have been named the 2009-10 Western Athletic Conference Stan Bates Award winners. The pair are the fourth and fifth Idaho student-athletes to earn the distinguished honor since the Vandals joined the WAC prior to the 2005-06 season. Named in honor of former WAC Commissioner Stan Bates, the annual award is given to the WAC's top male and female scholar-athletes and recognizes the recipients' athletic and academic accomplishments. The awards carry a $2,000 postgraduate scholarship.
Marler, from Kennewick, Wash. (Kennewick HS), earned degrees in Computer Science and Math in May and graduated Magna Cum Laude. He is a six-time academic all-WAC honoree and a CoSIDA first-team academic all-district member. He was also a 2009 third-team CoSIDA Academic All-American and was the 2010 Senior of the Year for the UI Computer Science department.
Over the last three years, Marler has volunteered for Paint the Palouse in which he helped paint houses for those who cannot afford to or who are physically not able. He also has helped out with track & field camps for kids.
In competition, Marler has been Idaho's top high jumper throughout his career. He finished in the top five at the WAC Indoor Championships all four seasons and had a career-best finish of fourth at this past spring's Outdoor Championship. He also competed in the javelin during his career.
Lee-Painter, from Moscow, Idaho (Moscow HS), completed her degree in Secondary Education and English Teaching this past spring. She is a nine-time academic all-WAC honoree and was named a CoSIDA Academic All-American twice during her career. Three times in her career at Idaho, Lee-Painter has participated in the UI Alternative Spring Break program in which she has helped with cleaning and recovery efforts in the wake of hurricanes that have devastated Mississippi and Texas and also helped build homes in conjunction with Habitat for Humanity in North Carolina.
During her career on the track, Lee-Painter became a nine-time first-team all-WAC honoree in cross country, indoor track & field and outdoor track & field. In 2008, she was the Vandals' top finisher in every cross country race and won three meets, including the WAC Championship where she was named the WAC's Cross Country Athlete of the Year. Lee-Painter was the WAC's Indoor Track Performer of the Year in 2009 after finishing first or second in the mile, 3,000-meter and 5,000-meter runs. This past spring, she was the 2010 WAC Outdoor Track Performer of the Year after becoming the first WAC athlete and third in NCAA history to win the 3,000-meter steeplechase, 5,000-meter and 10,000-meter runs at a single conference championship meet.