DURHAM, N.C. – The Duke track and field program held its annual team awards dinner Wednesday evening in Scharf Hall, honoring Blue Devils for their achievements in the 2017-18 campaign. Director of track and field Norm Ogilvie handed out 14 awards, honoring nine student-athletes for their accomplishments in the indoor season, outdoor season, full year and careers.
Receiving top indoor freshmen honors were Jacob Sobota for the men and Rivka Arbiv for the women. Sobota, a native of Knoxville, Tenn., posted a terrific first season with the Blue Devils etching his name among the all-time leaders in school history. At the ACC Indoor Championships, Sobota earned a silver medal in the heptathlon along with first-team All-ACC honors after finishing with a personal-best 5,516 points, which placed him second all-time in Duke history. Arbiv, a pole vault specialist, recorded an outstanding freshman indoor season as well. The Dunwoody, Ga., native garnered All-ACC second team honors after a solid outing at the ACC Indoor Championships where she cleared 13-11.25 (4.25) to tie for sixth and third all-time in school history.
The top outdoor freshmen honors went to Alex Miley for the men and Erin Marsh for the women. Miley, a distance runner from Maple Grove, Minn., enjoyed a pair of top-three finishes over the course of his freshman outdoor campaign, including a first-place win in the 4x1,500m relay at the Raleigh Relays. Miley’s personal-best of 3:47.65 placed him fourth in the 1,500m at the Duke Invitational. Marsh capped her freshman campaign with a great performance at the ACC Outdoor Championships. The Buford, Ga., native racked up 5,184 points—a total that ranks sixth in Duke history—to finish in fifth place and earn second-team All-ACC honors.
Kiegan Lenihan took home the men’s top field athlete award, while Madison Heath was awarded for the women’s top field athlete. Lenihan had an impressive outing at the ACC Outdoor Championships, capturing his first ACC title and first-team All-ACC honors after launching the javelin a personal-best 221-2 (67.42). Heath closed out her senior season with a pair of top-five finishes at both the ACC Indoor Championships and ACC Outdoor Championships, highlighted by a bronze medal at the indoor championships to earn first-team All-ACC honors for a second-straight season. Heath was also a first-team All-American at the NCAA Indoor Championships in 2018.
Jordan Burton, a middle distance runner from Warwick, N.Y., earned the award for the most improved men’s senior. Burton enjoyed a solid senior campaign, serving as one of the Blue Devils’ top distance runners a season ago where he was ranked ninth in the ACC in the 800m with a time of 1:50.32. Burton qualified for the ACC 1,500m final with a time of 3:46.00, representing a significant drop in his 1,500m time since his freshman year.
The duo of Maddy Price and Steven Solomon each took home several awards, with Price earning four and Solomon receiving three. Price was awarded the Women’s Indoor MVP Award, Women’s Outdoor MVP Award, Women’s Top Track Athlete Award and Most Improved Women’s Senior Award. Last season, Price earned second-team All-America honors for the second-straight season after helping the Duke 4x400 relay team to its highest finish at the NCAA Championships in school history with a ninth-place finish. Price also anchored the Duke women to the 2018 Penn Relays Championship of America in the 4x400 relay.
Solomon received the Men’s Indoor MVP Award, Men’s Outdoor MVP Award and the Men’s Top Track Athlete Award. In his lone year for the Blue Devils, Solomon enjoyed a historic campaign in both the indoor and outdoor seasons. He closed out his Duke career as the school’s record holder in the indoor and outdoor 400m, and indoor 600m, while also being a part of the outdoor sprint medley relay team that set a school record. Solomon also ran a key leg on Duke’s sprint medley relay, clocking 44.8 on his 400m leg. The relay, which placed fourth at Penn Relays, broke a Duke mark that had lasted since 1971.
The 2019 track and field season will kick off for Duke at the Carolina Cup on Saturday, Jan. 12 in Chapel Hill, N.C.