NEW ORLEANS — Two Tar Heels were named to the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association's first-team All-America list on Monday. Two more were named to the second team.
RJ Alowonle earned first-team honors for placing fifth in the mens 400-meter hurdles. Alowonle ran 51.06 seconds in the finals and earned four team points for the mens team.
Xenia Rahn earned first-team honors for finishing eighth in the womens heptathlon. Rahn totaled 5,558 points, 20 shy of the school record, en route to a new personal record and earning one point for the womens team.
Javonte Lipsey (400-meter hurdles) and Isaac Presson (5,000 meters) were on the second team.
Devon Carter, Ceo Ways, Alowonle and Lipsey earned honorable mentions for their 18th-place finish in the mens 4x400 relay. Lizzy Whelan and Sarah Howard were honorable mentions as well in the womens 1,500 and shot put respectively. Whelan finished in 17th and Howard finished 18th.
The North Carolina mens track & field and cross country programs combined to rank 13th in the U. S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Associations Mens Program of the Year.
The honor is awarded annually to the most outstanding cross country/track & field programs in each of the NCAAs three divisions for each gender. In order to be eligible for the award, teams must qualify for each of the NCAA Championships.
The mens cross country team finished the year in 17th place at the NCAA Championships. The mens indoor track and field team earned four points for a fifth-place finish in the mens 4x400 relay, which included RJ Alowonle, Sean Sutton, Javonte Lipsey and Ceo Ways. With four points the mens team finished tied for 45th.
The mens outdoor track and field team finished the NCAA Championships with four points again, but this time with an individual effort from RJ Alowonle who finished fifth in the mens 400-meter hurdles. With those four points the team finished tied for 55th.
The program earned 17 points from cross country, 48 from indoor track and 56.5 from outdoor track for a total of 121.5.
EAST CAROLINA: Senior Joran Vliegen was named one of 12 recipients of Conference USAs Jim Castañeda Postgraduate Scholarship Award, C-USA commissioner Britton Banowsky announced. Vliegen was the 2014 C-USA Player-of-the-Year .
Vliegen graduated with his bachelors degree in business in December and is currently pursuing his masters in business administration. He had a 3.62 GPA as an undergraduate. He is a four-time member of the C-USA Commissioners Honor Roll and was recognized as ECUs Most Outstanding Male Scholar-Athlete for 2013-14.
Vliegen posted a four-year career record of 109-30 in singles matches, including a 32-8 record as a senior. Vliegen reached the round of 32 at the NCAA mens singles championships and received a final ITA ranking of 28.
This is the sixth year the postgraduate scholarship award has been named for Castañeda, who served Rice University for 46 years as an educator, coach and Faculty Athletics Representative before he passed away in November 2008. The conference annually presents the $4,000 Postgraduate Scholarship awards to graduates as selected by the C-USA Faculty Athletics Representatives and approved by the Board of Directors.