SCSU Leads with Four Major Award Winners.
MANSFIELD, Mass. – American International’s Leakey Kipkosgei and Southern Connecticut’s Briana Burt have been chosen as the Northeast-10 Conference Track Athletes of the Year, as the league office released Outdoor Track & Field All-Conference honors on Tuesday afternoon.
Six different institutions are represented among the major award winners, with SCSU leading the way with four. Burt joins Ramsley Exantus, Oghenefejiro Onakpoma and John Wallin to earn NE10 recognition – as voted on by the league’s head coaches.
For a complete list of major award winners, please see below. All-Conference Teams, based on NE10 Outdoor Track & Field Championship results from May 3-4, can be found HERE.
Kipkosgei is coming off his second-career NCAA title, earning gold in the 3000m steeplechase at the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships in Kingsville, Texas. He also was a two-time NE10 champion in early May, earning first-place finishes in the 1500m and 3000m steeplechase. A USTFCCCA First Team All-American, Kipkosgei’s national title-winning time was 8:52.86.
Burt was a USTFCCCA First Team All-American in the 100m hurdles, finishing in sixth place in a time of 13.83 seconds at the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships. Earlier in May, the SCSU standout earned a silver medal in the 100m hurdles and gold in the 4x100m relay at the NE10 Championship at Southern New Hampshire.
Onakpoma was named Men’s Field Athlete of the Year after becoming a USTFCCCA First Team All-American in the triple jump with a seventh-place finish at the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships. He qualified for NCAA’s after a 15.44-meter leap at the UConn Northeast Challenge in April.
Assumption’s Abby Jones was voted the Women’s Field Athlete of the Year after a sensational season, which saw her earn USTFCCCA First Team honors in the heptathlon and Second Team status in the long jump. At the NE10 Championship, Jones won the heptathlon with an NCAA provisional point total of 4505.
Southern Connecticut’s Ramsley Exantus and Adelphi’s Kayla Little were selected as Track Rookies of the Year – as Exantus took fifth in the 110m hurdles and 400m hurdles at the NE10 and New England Championships. He achieved the fastest time in the conference and in the East Region among freshmen in the 400m hurdles with a 53.34. Little contributed 32 of 73 points for the Panthers at the NE10 Championship, taking second in the 100m and third in the 200m, while also serving as a key piece in the 4x400m (first place) and 4x100. (second place) relays.
Adelphi’s Kevin Nalisa and Franklin Pierce’s Paola Brena were chosen as Field Rookies of the Year. Nalisa was tops among freshmen in the triple jump and second overall in the NE10 with a jump of 14.22 meters, while placing third among freshmen and fifth overall in the long jump. At the NE10 Championship, he finished fifth in the long jump and third in the triple jump. Brena capped-off a remarkable freshman campaign with a USTFCCCA First Team All-American award after her eighth-place finish in the high jump at the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships. Her best jump of 1.74 meters was the top mark in the East Region and ranked eighth nationally.
Southern Connecticut’s Wallin was named Men’s Coach of the Year, while Stonehill’s Karen Boen was picked as Women’s Coach of the Year. Wallin led the Owls to their third-straight NE10 Championship, while Boen charged the Skyhawks to their fourth-consecutive league title. Each coach produced at least one athlete that qualified for NCAA’s.
Track Athletes of the Year: Leakey Kipkosgei (AIC) and Briana Burt (SCSU)
Field Athletes of the Year: Oghenefejiro Onakpoma (SCSU) and Abby Jones (Assumption)
Track Rookies of the Year: Ramsley Exantus (SCSU) and Kayla Little (Adelphi)
Field Rookies of the Year: Kevin Nalisa (Adelphi) and Paola Brena (Franklin Pierce)
Coaches of the Year: John Wallin (SCSU) and Karen Boen (Stonehill)
ABOUT THE NE10
The NE10 is an association of 15 diverse institutions serving student-athletes across 24 NCAA Division II sports. Together we build brilliant futures by embracing the journey of every student-athlete.
Each year, 4,500 student-athletes compete in conference championships, making the NE10 the largest DII conference in the country in terms of sport sponsorship. Leading the way in the classroom, on the field and within the community, the NE10 is proud of its comprehensive program and the experience it provides student-athletes.