She became the first woman in Whittier College history to earn All-American status on the track. She finished fourth with a time of 11.84 seconds in the 100-meter dash at the NCAA Division III National Championships in Rochester, New York, in May.
It was the third time the kinesiology major from Bonita, California, had been to nationals. She competed in the 200-meter dash and the 4x100 meter relay, as well.
“It was definitely a surprise,” Crawford said of the All-American honor. “Even though I'm very good at my 100-meter races, it's not always my best. The 200 is really where I thought I was going to place, but I guess there were different plans for me.”
Prior to Crawford, five Poet women had achieved All-American honors in track and field, with all five being field athletes. She was also named the 2023 Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Track Athlete of the Year and U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association crowned her 2023 NCAA Division III West Region Women's Outdoor Track Athlete of the Year, after receiving the same title for indoor track. Crawford's 200-meter personal record of 23.81 seconds has her ranked eighth all-time in NCAA DIII history.
“She took another big step forward this year,” said Bob Ramsey, Whittier’s Director of Track & Field and Cross Country. “It was really fun to watch her do that.”
Another Whittier senior, Ally Burke, was named NCAA Division III All-American Honorable Mention earlier in June for women’s water polo, marking the second consecutive year the Poet has earned the honor. The Las Vegas student-athlete scored 48 goals and made 12 assists in 25 games, leading the Poets in both categories last season.
The two graduating seniors have words of wisdom for new additions to the roster.
Crawford, now pursuing a career in personal training, has left some advice for incoming athletes: Be humble.
“There's going to be good days, there's going to be bad days, but you should always take every day as a lesson,” Crawford said. “Every day you train or compete is an important day and important in your individual experience as a collegiate athlete.”
Meanwhile, Burke, working on her master’s degree in business taxation, advises students to keep faith.
“Trust in your team and coaching staff,” Burke said, “and don’t be intimidated. Just play your sport.”