The junior turns in the third-best mark of his career at a distance of 233-3
Volunteer assistants Chris Helwick and Joanna Schultz also to compete at the Trials
The junior earned a trip to the NCAA Championship after finishing 10th in the East Regional
Zeb Sion is in his second season as assistant track & field coach at Wake Forest University in 2012-13. Sion specializes in the throwing events and coaches the Demon Deacon throwers and multi-event athletes in these disciplines. In addition, Sion uses his expertise as a former strength and conditioning coach to write, oversee and implement the team's strength and conditioning program.
In his first year in Winston-Salem, Sion helped Ben Lincoln break his own school record in the javelin throw twice during the season, with his top mark of 73.23m/240-3 coming at the ACC Championships and resulting in a third-place finish and All-ACC recognition. The 2012 season ended on an equally impressive performance when Lincoln, the Deacons' only participant, represented Wake Forest on the elite national level and placed 14th at the United States Olympic Trials in Eugene, Oregon. This performance followed the NCAA Championships where Lincoln placed 18th, earning him Honorable Mention All-America recognition for the second straight year.
In addition to Lincoln extending his school-record mark, Sion helped rank three more Wake Forest javelin throwers among the top 10 performers in school history. Freshman Patrick Donelan currently ranks fifth on the list (61.47m/201-8), while Trey Blanton comes in at eighth place (56.93m /186-9). Donelan and Blanton placed 6th and 8th, respectively, at the ACC Championships, as well. Decathlete Alex Hill stands in 10th place (54.37m/178-4) in school history and set personal records in all the throwing events during his senior season. Hill launched the winning throw in the shot put of the heptathlon (13.29m/43-7.25) at the 2012 ACC Indoor Championships.
Under Sion's guidance, the Wake Forest women's squad made significant improvements in 2012, as senior Sarah Brobeck finished fifth in the javelin at the ACC Championships and sophomore heptathlete Erika Martin placed eighth. Brobeck finished her career ranked second in the javelin in school history (43.09m/141-4), while Martin currently ranks sixth all-time on the chart (35.79m/117-5). Additionally, Sion helped Brobeck reach a personal-best throw of 13.50m/44-3.5 in the shot put to place fifth all-time in school history.
Off the track, Lincoln and senior jumper Erin Brooks were awarded the annual All-American Strength and Conditioning Athlete of the Year Award by the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) after being selected for the honor by Sion. The award recognized student-athletes' dedication to strength training and conditioning throughout the season.
Academically, the Deacon throwers and multi-event athletes performed very well during the 2011-2012 school year. Brobeck, in addition to Donelan, Hill, and Martin were recognized as members of the All-ACC Academic team. Brobeck was named to the Capital One Academic All-District team and received an ACC Post-Graduate Scholarship.
In Sion's first year with the Demon Deacons, he was able to sign two talented throwers for the 2012-2013 season. One of which, Jessie Merckle, was named a 2012 Track and Field News All-American and helped the women's recruiting class be rated as the ninth best in the nation for 2012 according to Track and Field News.
Merckle, the 2012 Pennsylvania State champion and fourth-best prep javelin thrower in the nation, currently holds Fort Cherry High School individual school records in the javelin (156-8), the shot put (38-10), the long jump (17-2.25), and the triple jump (34-10.5). She also placed second in the javelin at the USATF World Youth Trial in Myrtle Beach, S.C., in June of 2011, and second overall at the Junior Olympic Championships in Kansas during July of 2011.
Steve Michaelsen joins the men's squad in 2012 and comes to Wake Forest as an All-State performer in the discus for the past two years and an All-County selection for three years. He placed fourth in the shot put at the New Balance Outdoor National meet, earning All-America honors, and also placed fourth at the California state meet in the discus in 2012.
Prior to Wake Forest, Sion coached for four years at the University of Chicago. He served as associate head coach for track & field/cross country in his final two seasons after being promoted from assistant coach. In addition to his track & field duties at Chicago, Sion served as the department's Director of Strength and Conditioning.
Sion, the 2010 USTFCCCA Midwest Region Women's Assistant Coach of the Year, developed Chicago's throws group into a force on both the conference and Division III national level, accounting for 11 All-American accolades, 23 conference titles and 52 all-conference performances in four short years. His athletes also broke five school and conference records on multiple occasions during his tenure.
Sion's athletes contributed significantly to three top-10 national team finishes during his time at Chicago and scored over three-fourths of the total team points at the 2010 NCAA Indoor Championships, which led the women's team to a trophy and fourth-place finish.
A pair of Sion's finest athletes at the University of Chicago ended their careers as two of the best weight throwers in Division III history. Claire Ray ranks fifth on the all-time NCAA Division III list with a throw of 19.07m/62-6.75, while teammate Kristin Constantine ranks 11th on the same list with a throw of 18.26m/59-11.
Before coaching at Chicago, Sion served a one-year stint as a graduate assistant coach at Idaho State University in 2006-07. While at Idaho State, he coached one Big Sky Conference champion, two NCAA West Regional qualifiers, and one All-NCAA West Regional athlete. The ISU throwers broke three school records including the men's indoor and women's outdoor shot put marks. The men's outdoor shot put record, formally held by Sion himself, was also broken during the season. In addition, 10 athletes -- including his brother Jed -- earned All-Big Sky Conference accolades in the throws or multi-events.
A native of Pocatello, Idaho, Sion threw the shot put and discus for Georgia Tech from 2001-05 and served as the team's captain in 2005. Upon his graduation, he attended graduate school at Idaho State where he completed his athletic eligibility. During his athletic career, Sion was a two-time NCAA Division I championships qualifier and two-time All-Region shot putter, once at Georgia Tech and once at Idaho State. He earned All-Atlantic Coast Conference honors four times and All-Big Sky Conference recognition once. In 2004, Sion was the ACC shot put champion and was named Georgia Tech's Field MVP. At one point, Sion held the Georgia Tech indoor (18.00m/59-0.75), Georgia Tech outdoor (18.11m/59-5), and Idaho State outdoor (18.34m/60-2) records in the shot put.
Sion still holds the Idaho high school state record in the shot put that he broke in 2001 with a toss of 19.58m/64-3.
In the spring of 2005, Sion was recognized as the recipient of Georgia Tech's prestigious Robert Cup. This award is given annually to Tech's top senior student-athlete. Upon graduation, Sion was one of Georgia Tech's recipients of the ACC Postgraduate Scholarship, a distinction awarded to top student-athletes from each ACC institution.
Sion graduated with highest honors from Georgia Tech in 2005 with a Bachelor of Science in Management. He then earned his master's degree in Physical Education and Athletic Administration from Idaho State in 2007. A USATF Level II Coach in the throwing events, Sion is also recognized as a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and a USA Weightlifting Sports Performance Coach.
Sion is married to the former Marcela Tuñón, a Civil Engineer working for Hazen & Sawyer in Greensboro, N.C., and the couple resides in Winston-Salem with their son, Ezekiel, and their boxer dog, Magnus.