PHILADELPHIA - Junior Thomas Awad was recognized for his outstanding track & field season on Monday when he was named the Mid-Atlantic Track Athlete of the Year by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA).Award winners were determined by a vote of USTFCCCA member coaches.
Awad, who holds three school records, became the second man in school history to win cross country, indoor and outdoor Heps titles in the same school year (Dave Merrick, 1975-76). He won the Heptagonal championhip in the indoor 3,000 meters and was part of Penn's first distance medley relay Heps champion in 36 years before claiming league titles in the outdoor 1,500 and 5,000 meters. In the Fall, Awad earnedPenn's first cross country individual Heps title since 1975.
Awad garnered four first-team All-Ivy accolades this season and recorded the second-fastest time in Ivy League history in the outdoor 5,000 meters. The East Norwich, N.Y., native holds the school record in the event by nearly 20 seconds -- a record which had previously stood at Penn for 37 years. Hequalified for the NCAA Outdoor Championships for the second time in his career and finished second at the NCAA East Preliminary Round. He will compete for a national championship in the 5,000 meters on Friday at 9:30 p.m. (EST).
Awad is one of five Penn athletes who will all represent the Quakers at the NCAA Championships in Eugene, Ore., June 10-13 at Hayward Field.