BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – The East Carolina track & field team wrapped up the AAC Indoor Championships on Saturday. The Pirates were highlighted by a pair of All-Conference performances by Naadiya Faison and Royal Burris and a Freshman of the Year nod for Jared Harrell.
Burris kicked things off on the day for ECU with his second-place outing in the 200m. Attempting to defend his AAC crown in the event, the Charlotte native nearly pulled it off with a personal record of 20.85 seconds, just behind winner Shaun Maswanganyi of Houston.
“As a coaching staff we are very proud of both teams,” said Director of Track & Field Curt Kraft. “Both teams competed to their hearts out the entire weekend. It’s very hard to be disappointed when you know, they put their heart and soul into scoring every point they could. Many of the goals that we set for the weekend were accomplished in so many different ways.”
Faison had a big day in the shot put with her second-place finish. Faison’s throw of 15.78m (51-09.25) was good for a PR and second in school history in the event. It would have taken a Herculean effort for the win as Nu’uausala Tuilefano of Houston threw17.46m (57-03.50) for a new AAC Championships meet record.
“I felt like this weekend brought us closer as a team,” continued Kraft. “Everyone had a lot of energy and enthusiasm all weekend long. Hopefully this momentum and excitement will carry us into the outdoor season. We are not satisfied with the team results; therefore, we will continue to work hard and improve for the upcoming outdoor season. We will get healthy and rested up and get set for our first outdoor meet at the Raleigh Relays. We have two and half months to get ready for the Outdoor AAC Championships.”
After his championship performance on Friday in the long jump, Harrell followed up Saturday with a huge PR of 15.12m (49-07.25) in the triple jump good for fourth in the meet and sixth in program history. For his accomplishments on the weekend, the rookie sensation earned AAC Freshman of the Year honors.
As teams, the Pirates place seventh on the men’s side and ninth on the women’s.
Up Next
With the indoor season wrapping up, the Pirates will turn to outdoor competition which opens at the Raleigh Relays March 23-25.