2016-17 MALE ATHLETE OF THE YEAR: JOHN BRAGA (Men's Track & Field | Senior | North Reading, Mass.)
Senior John Braga (North Reading, Mass.) of the Merrimack College men's track & field team has been named the Fuddruckers Male Athlete of the Year after a phenomenal academic year as one of the country's top field athletes.
The first NE10 Field Athlete of the Year in program history, Braga was also named the program's first-ever Male East Region Athlete of the Year as part of an incredible indoor season. Along the way, he won a league title in the long jump while helping the men's team post its best-ever finish at the NE10 Championships. In his second trip to NCAA Nationals, Braga finished 12th in the heptathlon to garner Second Team All-American honors while battling through injury in a true display of dedication.
Braga's indoor season wrapped up with another trip to the NCAA Indoor Championships, where he placed 13th in the heptathlon with three top-10 event finishes. During the season, he was named the Most Outstanding Field Performer at the NE10 Championships after posting three top-three finishes, including an NE10 title in the long jump. He entered NCAA's ranked first regionally in both the heptathlon (5343) and the long jump (7.39m) and also finished top-five regionally in both the pole vault and the high jump. The North Reading, Massachusetts native was one of just 13 men nationally named USTFCCCA All-Region in four events.
For his efforts, Braga was also named Merrimack College's 2016-17 Male Athlete of the Year at the 2017 LEAD Awards at the beginning of the month.
Check back at the beginning of each week as the Athletic Department unveils the top student-athlete performers from the previous week!