NEW YORK – Over the next few weeks, GoColumbiaLions.com will take a look at the teams, student-athletes, coaches and staff members set to be inducted in the Columbia University Athletics Hall of Fame this October. The final installment features celebrated cross country and track and field sensation Steve Sundell ’04CC.
Bruce Soriano ’72CC & George Kolombatovich
John Baumann ’08
Kathy Lavold ’03BC
Al Barabas ’36CC
Emily Jacobson ’08CC & Daria Schneider ’10CC
The 1996 Football Team
1929 Heavyweight Rowing
Liz Cheung-Gaffney ’98CC
Ted Kiendl 1911CC & John Howard Johnson ’22CC
Milena Kachar ’07CC
2005 Women’s Cross Country Team
Jackie Adelflo ’06SEAS
Howard Endelman ’87CC & The 1986 Men’s Tennis Team
Len Renery ’71CC and Amr Aly ’85CC
Steve Sundell ’04CC
Dubbed as one of the most anticipated incoming students, Steve Sundell proved everyone right by becoming the first men’s Ivy League Individual cross country champion in Columbia history.
This remarkable runner has a plethora of accomplishments under his belt. Sundell had a successful first season (2000-2001) with the Lions as he finished in fifth place at the Heptagonal Cross Country Championships alongside coming in 17th at Easterns. The All-East team honoree, Sundell became the first Columbia first-year to earn first-team All-Ivy honors and the eighth runner in Lions history to earn the recognition. He also covered a five-mile course at the Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx, New York, in 25:11.7, which was the 12th fastest mark in school history.
During his sophomore campaign, he posted a winning time of 24:26.9 in the 5000m, which was the fastest Hep mark in over a decade, en route to first and second team All-Ivy accolades. He was a six-time Ivy League champion, a two time All-American and was also the recipient of the 2004 Columbia Connie S. Maniatty Outstanding Senior Athlete Award.
Even though Sundell accomplished a great amount of personal accolades during his time at Columbia, he was more concerned with his teams success rather than his own. He also attributes a great deal to his coaching staff. He believes that their help coupled with their intense workouts shaped him and the team as a whole. He described that the coaching staff brought to light what was important, such as focusing on what you’re here for, looking to achieve your goals and not worry about the trivial things. Sundell accredits that guidance and mentality to his prowess on the field.