2012 Athletes of the Year
College Men--Donn Cabral
Princeton senior Donn Cabral had a dream season in 2012. He anchored the Tigers to two wins at the Penn Relays, won the steeplechase and 10k at the Heps, broke a 31-year old Eastern Record when he ran 8:19.14 for the steeple in May, then won the NCAA steeple in June.
Even though these performances didn’t factor into his choice as E.T.’s Male AOY for 2012, Cabral then finished 2nd in the steeple at the U.S. Trials and 8th in the Olympic final in London.
Others doing well in 2012 included:
Virginia Tech junior Alexander Ziegler won his 2nd straight NCAA title in the hammer throw.
Syracuse senior Jarret Eatton set an Eastern Indoor Record of 7.49 in the 60-meter hurdles before winning that event at the NCAA Indoor Championships(he was 6th in the NCAA 110-hurdles outdoors).
Penn State senior Joe Kovacs won the shot put at the Penn Relays and the Big-10 Championships, where he set an Eastern Record of 68-5. He also finished 4th at the Outdoor NCs. Kovacs later improved to 69-2 while finishing a close 4th at the U.S. Olympic Trials.
Virginia Tech junior Hasheem Halim finished 3rd and 4th, respectively, in the triple jump at the NCAA Indoor and Outdoor Championships.
College Women--Abbey D’Agostino
This was a tough one, but Dartmouth’s Abbey D’Agostino gets the nod for AOY over Georgetown’s Emily Infeld.
Infeld was the NCAA Indoor 3k champion and finished 2nd in the 1500-outdoors. She was also 4th at the 2011 NCAA X-Country Championships.
D’Agostino was 8th in the NCAA Indoor 3k, but won the 5000 outdoors and moved into the All-Time Eastern top-10 with her 15:23.35 clocking. She also ran down Infeld on the anchor leg(4:35.75) of the Indoor DMR, moving Dartmouth into 3rd place, one position ahead of Georgetown.
D’Agostino, who narrowly missed making the U.S. OLympic team in the 5000, becomes the first performer from Dartmouth, male or female, to be named E.T.’s Athlete of the Year.
Villanova’s Sheila Reid, last year’s AOY, didn’t have quite the year she had in 2011, but she did win the 2011 NCAA X-Country title and anchored the Wildcats to a win in the DMR at the Penn Relays.
Also deserving mention is Stony Brook’s Lucy Van Dalen, who won the mile at the NCAA Indoor Championships and finished 4th outdoors in the 1500.
For both men and women, only performances made through the NCAA Outdoor championship were taken into consideration in the voting for AOY.
H.S. Boys--Edward Cheserek
Junior Edward Cheserek (St.Benedict’s Prep,NJ), performed well in all 3 seasons.
He won the 2011 Foot Locker X-Country title, set a U.S. prep indoor record of 13:57.14 for 5000-meters, ran a 4:06.2 come-from-behind anchor to lead his team to victory in the DMR at Penn, and ran 29:42.31 for 10,000-meters(#8-AT US, #2-AT East). He also ran 1:49.98 for 800-meters and won the 2-mile at the New Balance indoor and outdoor nationals and his indoor 8:43.16 is the #5 performance all-time U.S.
Senior Sam Mattis (East Brunswick,NJ) led U.S. preps in the discus with his Eastern Record of 218-4. He was a winner at the Penn Relays and the New Balance Outdoor Nationals.
Senior Eric Futch(Penn Wood,Pa) was a winner of the 400-hurdles at the Penn Relays and won U.S. and World Junior titles. His best of 50.24 puts him 3rd on the all-time East list.
Junior Rudy Winkler (Averill Park,NY) led U.S. preps in the indoor weight throw(80-11 3/4[#8-AT-US, #4-AT East]) and outdoor hammer throw(251-1/#6-AT-East).
Others doing well in 2012:
Josh Lampron(Mansfield,Ma) moved to #7 on the all-time East mile list with his 4:02.98 PR.
Strymar Livingson(Columbus,NYC) set National Indoor Records in the 500(1:01.68) and 600(1:17.58).
Dondre Echols(Potomac,Ma) led the East in the 110-hurdles(13.56), winning the U.S. Junior title(6th at World Jrs.)
H.S. Girls--Mary Cain
It was a banner year for Eastern preps, with soph sensation Mary Cain (Bronxville,NY) coming out on top as our choice for AOY.
Cain had an abbreviated indoor season, running 2:07.26 for 800-meters and a U.S. leading 2:47.29(#6-AT U.S.) in the 1000, but it was outdoors where she really excelled.
She set a Penn Relays Record in the mile(4:39.28/#7-AT U.S.) and ran an 800 PR of 2:03.34(#4-AT East) at the Loucks Games. She then won the 1500 at the NY State meet and the U.S. Junior Championships before capping off her season by setting a U.S. High School record of 4:11.01 while finishing 6th at the World Junior Championships.
Cain was a narrow choice over senior Ajee Wilson(Neptune,NJ), the 2010 AOY. The 800-meter specialist set an Eastern Indoor record of 2:04.13, moved to #2 on the all-time U.S. and Eastern outdoor lists with her PR of 2:00.91, and won U.S. and World Junior titles.
Other notables in 2012 included senior Brianna Nerud(North Shore,NY), who set a U.S. H.S. record of 10:00.72 in the steeplecase; Junior Carla Forbes(Newton No.,Ma), who set an Eastern Indoor record of 42-5 1/4 in the triple jump and won both horizontal jumpe at the New Balance Outdoor Nationals; and junior Kadecia Baird(Nedgar Evers,NYC), a native of Guyana, who won the silver medal in the 400-meters at the World Junior Championships with a personal best of 51.04(#2-AT east).
Eastern Track's 2012 Athletes Of The Year