UMBC’s Smith and Obemeata Sweep America East Weekly Track and Field Awards; Retriever Men Ranked Tenth in Mid-Atlantic Region
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – UMBC seniors Andrew Smith (Chadds Ford, Pa./Garnet Valley) and Shioma Obemeata (New Rochelle, N.Y./Iona Prep/St. Francis) have swept the America East men's track and field weekly awards, the conference office announced on Tuesday afternoon. The awards are the first of the outdoor season for both athletes.
The Retriever men's team is once again ranked in the top-ten in the Mid-Atlantic Region, receiving the No. 10 spot, as the United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) released its Week Three poll on Tuesday.
After a record-breaking indoor season in which he advanced to the NCAA Championships, Smith has put together a stellar outdoor season as well. The senior garners his first America East Male Track Athlete of the Week honor during the spring season after resetting his own school record in the 800m run at the Larry Ellis Invitational at Princeton. Smith broke the record a week earlier at the Mason Spring Invitational with a time of 1:50.05, but lowered it even further this past weekend down to 1:49.64 while finishing in sixth-place.
Smith leads the conference by over a second during the outdoor season and also ranks 46th in the nation. During the indoor season, the Retriever senior broke the school record in the 800m three times, successfully defended his America East championship in the event, and then became just the sixth athlete in UMBC history to reach the NCAA Championships.
Obemeata receives his first conference Male Field Athlete of the Week award after winning the triple jump at the Morgan State Legacy Meet with a career-best leap. In his first attempt of the finals, Obemeata recorded a jump of 14.90m (48'10.75") to take the top spot in the competition and move up to second in the UMBC record book. In addition, the leap qualifies the senior for the IC4A Championships and ranks second overall in the America East, but the best during the outdoor season.
Obemeata also competed in the high jump event at Morgan State, finishing in fifth.
The UMBC track and field team has claimed at least one weekly conference award in four of the five competition weeks during the 2014 outdoor season for a total of eight honors.
The Retrievers will now send athletes to the prestigious Penn Relays in Philadelphia which will begin on Thursday, April 24 at Franklin Field.