WINTHROP, Mass. – Suffolk outdoor track & field took in a haul of GNAC post-season honors with four major awards being handed out to Rams per a league announcement made Monday afternoon.
All awards were voted upon by the league's six head coaches. The foursome all write their names in the Suffolk track & field record books as the first-ever student-athletes to earn major league awards.
Emily Manfra headlined the quartet of Rams, who earned a recognition as the junior from Stoneham, Massachusetts, was named the GNAC Women's Track Athlete of the Year. After becoming the first All-American in Suffolk indoor track & field history this winter, the long-distance runner added conference champion to her resume this spring in the 800 with a championship record time of 2:20.59, displacing the previous record by nearly eight seconds. A week later, she garnered All-New England status in the 1500 with a personal-best time of 4:34.58 and looks to earn a secure a spot at the national championship once again this spring.
Suffolk saw three first-year competitors be tabbed the best first-years in their respective events. Matyas Csiki-Fejer picking up Men's Track Rookie of the Year, while Allison Rodrigues and Michael Balestra each captured the GNAC Field Rookie of Year accolades.
At the conference championships, Csiki-Fejer became the first-ever Ram to capture two titles – the 800 (1:59.97) and the 1500 (4:00.23). The Saint Louis, Missouri, native, garnered his pair of GNAC titles with conference championship best times in each event.
Rodrigues topped the javelin field at the league tournament to establish herself as the GNAC Champion in the event with a conference-record mark of 30.94 meters. At the league tournament, she also finished as the runner-up in the shot put (10.91 M) and rounded out the podium in the discus with her toss of 32.47 M good for third. The North Andover, Massachusetts, product made more history as the first-ever Suffolk women's fielder to compete at the regional event, where she finished 13th in the shot put and 17th in the javelin.
Balestra set a GNAC Championship record in the hammer throw with a toss of 46.60 en route to GNAC Champion and all-league accolades. At New England's, he put together the eighth-best performance with a 48.49 throw to become the first-ever Ram fielder to pick up all-region status.
Each of the Rams, as well as Suffolk's entire team, has one final chance to punch their tickets to the 2019 NCAA Championships in Geneva, Ohio, May 23 at MIT's Final Qualifier Thursday, May 16.
2019 ALL-GNAC OUTDOOR TRACK & FIELD
Women's Track Athlete of the Year– Emily Manfra, Suffolk
Men's Track Athlete of the Year– Matt Malone, Regis
Women's Track Rookie of the Year– Hannah Fitzpatrick, Emmanuel
Men's Track Rookie of the Year– Matyas Csiki-Fejer, Suffolk
Women's Field Athlete of the Year– Fatima St. Hilarie, Regis
Men's Field Athlete of the Year– Dan LaFlamme, Regis
Women's Field Rookie of the Year– Allison Rodrigues, Suffolk
Men's Field Rookie of the Year– Michael Balestra, Suffolk
Women's Coach of the Year– Tom Dann, Saint Joseph's (Maine)
Men's Coach of the Year– Lyndsay Ostler (Bisaccio), Colby Sawyer
Women's Institutional Sportsmanship – Regis
Men's Institutional Sportsmanship – Saint Joseph's (Maine)