NEW ORLEANS, La. – Texas A&M’s assistant coach Sean Brady and multi-athlete Tyra Gittens were recognized with regional awards by the United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association on Friday.
Sean Brady was named women’s South Central Assistant Coach of the Year, while Tyra Gittens was named women’s South Central Field Athlete of the Year.
“Tyra is probably one of the most deserving for this award we’ve ever had,” head coach Pat Henry said. “She set a school record and led the nation in the pentathlon, and to do what she did in the open events at the conference meet was truly an amazing effort.”
It is the second time the duo has claimed the awards and the first since the 2018 outdoor season.
“Tyra is very deserving of this honor,” assistant coach Brady said. “She has those intangible qualities that allow her to perform at her best when it counts.”
Recently, Gittens won the SEC pentathlon with a collegiate-leading score of 4,391 points, finished third in high jump (1.85m/6-0.75) and fourth in long jump (6.27m/20-7). She was recognized with the Cliff Harper Award for her 21-point performance, the highest female total at the meet.
“Her showing at the SEC Championships was not a surprise, but in this conference to score 21 points is special,” said Brady. “Tyra epitomizes what it means to be a selfless teammate, and her positive energy is infectious. She is an Aggie through and through, I am very proud of what she has accomplished.”
Gittens has qualified to the NCAA Indoor Championships in Albuquerque, N.M., in all three events.
Her season best pentathlon score broke the Texas A&M record as well as the Trinidad & Tobago national record. She also recorded an indoor personal best high jump clearance of 1.86m/6-1.25 that equaled the school record.
In his third season leading the jumps and combined events at Texas A&M, assistant coach Brady coached three Aggies to six top-15 marks on the women’s side in 2020. Gittens currently leads the nation in the pentathlon, No. 3 in high jump and No. 11 in long jump. Deborah Acquah is No. 2 in the nation in long jump and triple jump, while Ciynamon Stevenson is No. 4 in triple jump.
Despite Texas A&M finishing sixth on the women’s side at the SEC Championships, his athletes scored 44 of the 58 points for the Aggies including two golds, one silver and one bronze.
“Across the board his athletes did very well,” said Henry. “From the beginning of the meet to the end his athletes contributed points in the multi-events and open events, he is very well deserving of this award.”
The duo will travel with nearly a dozen other Aggies to compete at the NCAA Indoor Championships March 13-14 in Albuquerque, N.M.