PORTLAND, Ore. – For the first time this season, a pair of Seawolves earned GNAC Athlete of the Week recognition. Alaska Anchorage junior Caroline Kurgat was named Women’s Track Athlete of the Week and sophomore Christopher Brake secured Men’s Field Athlete of the Week, the league announced Monday.
Kurgat, a Nursing and Medical Laboratory Science major from Eldoret, Kenya, earned the weekly honor for an unprecedented fourth time this outdoor season, following a 5,000-meter record-setting performance. The junior registered the third-fastest time in Div. II history in 15 minutes, 41.21 seconds at the Payton Jordan Invitational on Thursday in Stanford, Calif.
She won her heat and finished 17th out of 40 professional and Div. I runners. Kurgat owns the third- and fifth-fastest times in the Div. II record books, bettering her GNAC record of 15:43.95 set at the Bryan Clay Invite on Apr. 20.
Kurgat’s four awards stand alone in UAA history. No Seawolf man or woman has ever won the award three times in an indoor or outdoor track and field season. Joyce Chelimo combined for three awards in 2016 (two indoor, one outdoor).
Brake garnered league recognition following strong marks in both the high jump and triple jump at Saturday’s Ken Shannon Invitational in Seattle, Wash.
He posted a GNAC Championships qualifying and career-best height of 6 feet, 6.75 inches in the high jump, placing second. He also leapt 46 feet, 11 inches in the triple jump for third place. Both marks are second-best in the GNAC this season.
Brake, a Geomatics major from Nelson, New Zealand, was named the GNAC Men’s Field Athlete of the Week during the indoor season as well (Jan. 8-14).
The Seawolves finished with three indoor weekly awards and six outdoor awards in 2018. This outdoor total marked the most since 2013.
UAA will look to earn postseason recognition at the GNAC Outdoor Track and Field Outdoor Championships, May 11-12 in Monmouth, Ore.
2018 UAA GNAC TRACK AND FIELD ATHLETES OF THE WEEK
Jan. 8-14 Christopher Brake (Men’s Field)
Feb. 5-11 Danielle McCormick (Women’s Track)
Feb. 19-25 Darrion Gray (Men’s Track)
Mar. 19-25 Caroline Kurgat (Women’s Track)
Mar. 26-Apr. 1 Caroline Kurgat (Women’s Track)
Apr. 9-15 Danielle McCormick (Women’s Track)
Apr. 16-22 Caroline Kurgat (Women’s Track)
Apr. 30-May 6 Christopher Brake (Men’s Field)
Apr. 30-May 6 Caroline Kurgat (Women’s Track)
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