PHILADELPHIA - Junior heptagonal cross country champion Thomas Awad and former football head coach Al Bagnoli were honored at the 111th annual Philadelphia Sports Writers Association (PSWA) Awards Dinner Friday night in Cherry Hill, N.J.
Awad and Bagnoli were joined by fellow honorees Mo'ne Davis (Taney Dragons), Todd Frazier (Cincinnati Reds), Kimmo Timonen (Philadelphia Flyers) and Mike Trout (Los Angeles Angels), among others.
Awad became the first Penn runner since 1975 to win the individual heptagonal championship in cross country. He then earned All-America honors at the NCAA Cross Country Championships -- the first Penn athlete to accomplish that feat since 2002. His 27th-place finish at the national championship meet was the fourth-highest in program history.
Bagnoli will be presented a Special Achievement Award for his legendary coaching career at Penn. The school's all-time winningest head coach retired following the 2014 season with an Ivy League-record nine outright championships. He finished with the second-most Ivy League wins all-time (112), and held the NCAA FCS record for consecutive wins with 24 between the 1993-95 seasons.
Made up of the most prominent media members in the Philadelphia area, the Philadelphia Sports Writers Association was founded on May 12, 1904, and the first of what would become an annual Awards Dinner was held Feb. 15, 1905.