Emory University Track & Field Head Coach Linh Nguyen and junior thrower Laura Sheckter were honored by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) yesterday. Nguyen was named the South/Southeast Region Women's Coach of the Year and Laura Sheckter was named South/Southeast Region Womens's Field Athlete of the Year.
Nguyen, in his first season with the program, led the Emory women to a No. 1 regional ranking, a third place finish at the UAA Indoor Championships, and will oversee three athletes from the women's squad at the 2020 NCAA Indoor Championships. Nguyen, who has previously coached in stints at the University of Toledo and the University of North Carolina-Greensboro, won conference Coach of the Year awards in 2011 and 2014, with both of them coming while he was in charge of cross country teams. Nguyen was chosen as the Mid-American Conference Coach of the Year in 2011 after his Toledo Women's Cross Country Team won the MAC Championship for the sixth time in the program's history. Additionally, he was selected as the 2011 Southern Conference Cross Country Coach of the year when the men's and women's teams from UNCG both took the team titles at the conference championships that season. Most recently, Nguyen was recognized by the USTFCCA this past cross country season, as the Emory Men's Cross Country team gave a strong performance at the South/Southeast Regional Championship, which earned Nguyen the region's Coach of the Year honor for 2019. Nguyen's naming as the 2020 South/Southeast Women's Indoor Coach of the Year is the fourth time a head coach of the Emory Women's Indoor Track and Field team has earned the award.
Sheckter becomes just the third Eagle ever to be named the Women's Indoor Field Athlete of the Year after a breakout junior season for the Eagles. The field athlete competed in indoor competition for the first time this year, as she previously filled a role on the women's basketball team before choosing to focus on throwing. She twice set the school record in the Shot Put this season, most recently with a 13.91m toss recorded at last weekend's Tufts Last Chance Final Qualifier, a mark that gives her the ninth-best throw in DIII competition this season. Sheckter claimed the UAA title in the event with a heave of 13.55m. She also had the 10th-longest throw out of South/Southeast athletes in the Women's Weight Throw.