NEW YORK - Columbia track & field junior Sharay Hale capped an incredible 2010-11 indoor track & field season with one of the top honors in the nation. Hale has been named a first-team All-American selection by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA). The awards were given as a result of performances at the past weekend’s NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships in College Station, Texas, where Hale finished seventh in the 400m dash. 

This is the second time in as many years that Hale has earned USTFCCCA All-America distinctions, but her first time earning the honors indoors. In 2010, Hale earned the honor as she was one of the top eight finishers in the 400m dash who hold US citizenship. Hale finished the season with the sixth fastest 400m time in the nation, advancing to the semifinals of the NCAA National Championships.

This past weekend, Hale competed in her first-ever national finals in the 400m dash, finishing seventh overall, her performance hindered by a fall on the track. Hale ran in the first heat of the finals, and was held up when Clemson’s Marlena Welsh got tripped up by Arkansas’ Shelise Williams. Welsh fell into Hale’s lane, and the junior was forced to hurdle over Welsh to finish the race. Despite the obstacle, Hale ran 54.22, a time good for seventh place in the nation.

Hale is also a three-time Ivy League champion in the 400m dash, a two-time champion in the 200m dash, and a two-time Most Outstanding Performer of the Meet at Ivy League Championships. She is a school record holder in four different events, and holds several Ivy League Records as well. 

Hale and her indoor track & field teammates will be back in action Saturday, March 25, as the Lions will take part in the Big 5 meet in Philadelphia, Pa.