Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Hall gets major award


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Barbadian athletes are making an impact on the United States’ collegiate circuit on and off the track.

Following on the heels of Mario Burke sensationally sweeping the sprint double at the American Athletic Conference Outdoor Championships last weekend, the multi-talented Shakera “Smilie” Hall has also received one of the most prestigious athletics awards in the United States.

Hall, who secured a scholarship at the St Augustine’s University, was named the 2018 Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) Female Scholar-Athlete Of The Year at the conference’s End-Of-Year Awards Reception in Charlotte, North Carolina, on Tuesday.

“This is overwhelming. I would like to thank coach [George] Williams for helping me become a well-rounded individual at Saint Augustine’s University,” Hall said after receiving her award.

The CIAA, which was founded in 1912, is one of the oldest conferences in the United States.

The 23-year-old Hall, a former CARIFTA Games’ hurdler and national junior volleyballer, earned the honour for her exceptional achievements in athletics, academics and community service.

Highest honour


She graduated with highest honour last Saturday with a degree in business administration. Her cumulative grade point average of 3.939 met the requirement for the university’s highest academic distinction among graduates.

Also graduating were Hall’s fellow Barbadian athletes Olympic Games 400-metre hurdler Tia-Adana Belle, who competed at the recent Commonwealth Games in Australia and sprinter Leah Barker.

At the SAU athletic banquet in April, Hall won the highest GPA individual awards in volleyball, women’s indoor track and field and women’s outdoor track and field.

As an athlete, Hall, a former Coleridge & Parry schoolgirl, excelled in both volleyball and track and field. She garnered several postseason awards in volleyball, including the Hero Sports D2 Volleyball Fan Choice National Offensive Player Of The Year and CIAA Volleyball Offensive Player Of The Year.

Hall was also an All-CIAA first team selection for the second consecutive year.

A ferocious outside hitter, Hall led the CIAA and is ranked fourth nationally in Division 2 in kills per set (5.04). She is also ranked seventh in points per set (5.43).

In track and field, Hall played a key role in helping the nationally-ranked Lady Falcons sweep the CIAA indoor and outdoor titles.

She is the CIAA 60-metre hurdles indoor champion and 100-metre hurdles outdoor champion. Hall has captured four individual conference crowns in her stellar career including the pentathlon in 2017 and 2015.


Washed children’s feet


Hall also found time in her busy schedule to help others. She was among a group of CIAA students who volunteered with the Samaritan’s Feet organisation during the league’s basketball tournament in Charlotte. She washed children’s feet and gave them new socks and shoes. (EZS)


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