(NEW ORLEANS, La.) – Junior Justin Kiefel (Downingtown, Pa. / Downingtown STEM Academy) of the Carnegie Mellon University men's track and field team along with head coach Gary Aldrich were honored by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) with outstanding regional recognition.
Kiefel was named Mideast Region Men's Field Athlete of the Year while Aldrich garnered his fifth Mideast Coach of the Year honor, three times as indoor and now his second for the outdoor season.
Kiefel becomes the program's first men's track and field athlete to garner a regional award and second overall. Jacqueline Guevel was the other Carnegie Mellon track and field athlete to garner the regional award since the USTFCCCA started recognizing Regional Athletes of the Year winners in 2006. Guevel received the honor in 2011.
The junior will continue his record setting season at this weekend's NCAA Division III Outdoor Track and Field Championships at the Irwin Belk Track Complex in Greensboro, North Carolina. Kiefel is set to compete in both the long and triple jumps. The school-record holder in both the long jump and triple jump this spring, he is currently tied at the top of the national rankings in the long jump with a distance of 7.54 meters and ranks fifth in the triple jump with a leap of 14.93 meters. This will be his second appearance on the national stage, as he competed in the triple jump at the 2019 NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships.
Aldrich, who is in his seventh-year at the helm, coached the Tartans to a runner-up finish at the All-Atlantic Region Track and Field Conference Outdoor Championships last week. Under Aldrich, the Tartans set four school records this season and are currently ranked eighth in the latest USTFCCCA Division III Track & Field Rating Index.
Aldrich also received the same accolade in 2019, with indoor honors coming in 2014, 2016 and 2019. He was previously a five-time USTFCCCA Mideast Regional Assistant Coach of the Year winner for the Tartans.
Aldrich and his staff will be coaching five athletes in seven events this weekend at the 2021 NCAA Division III Outdoor Track and Field Championships hosted at the Irwin Belk Track Complex in Greensboro, North Carolina.