EMU senior Grant Amoateng (Bristow, Va./Patriot) finished his final indoor track & field season on a high note, breaking his PR and earning 11th at Saturday's NCAA Indoor National Championships.
This is the highest Amoateng has finished at a national meet after coming in 13th in the triple jump at each of the last two outdoor championships.
Amoateng improved in each of his three attempts on Saturday. After scratching on his first jump, he had a solid landing at 14.12m (46ft-4.00in) on his second. Then on the third attempt, Amoateng hit the sand at 14.37m (47ft-1.75in), breaking his indoor PR of 14.30m (46ft-11.00in).
He came just two inches short of ninth place and advancing to the finals for three more jumps. The top eight finishers earned All-America honors.
Associate Cross Country and Track & Field Coach Erick Camodeca said he could not be happier with his senior's performance.
"Grant had a great series, and hit an indoor best at the National Meet," he explained. "The competition was tough because usually when that happens you're a lock for finals and All-American status. We can walk away from this meet and indoor season feeling great about what Grant accomplished. We are really motivated and excited to see what he can achieve this outdoor season."
Even though the meet was nearly 600 miles from EMU's campus, Amoateng had some extra support from his fellow Royals in Boston.
"Grant had two teammates (Wade Banks and Michaela Chowning) drive up to support him, which really touched and motivated him," Camodeca said. "It also gave them a taste of this atmosphere and the hunger to be here as an athlete."
Amoateng also came close to breaking EMU's program record in the event. He finishes his indoor career just behind Michael Allen's 2009 record of 14.43m (47ft-4.25in).
EMU's outdoor season starts next weekend with the W&L Track & Field Carnival on Friday and Saturday in Lexington, Va.