TRIPLE jump star Chengetayi Mapaya capped off a memorable debut season in the United States in style after earning First-Team All-America Honours at the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Outdoor Track and Field Championship in Eugene, Oregon, US, on Friday.
The 19-year-old Zimbabwean who is on scholarship at Texas Christian University (TCU), set a personal best jump on his way to finishing fifth in the prestigious meet which attracts the cream of US collegiate track and field talent.
Mapaya leaped 16,42m on his fifth attempt to significantly better his previous outdoor personal-best jump of 16,25m, which came at the National Relay Championships in April.
The former St George’s College prodigy finished just behind his fellow TCU teammate Scotty Newton, who finished in fourth position after jumping 16,47m on his second attempt.
The triple jump competition at the NCAA Championships was won by Texas A&M’s Algerian athlete Yasser Triki with a leap 16,79m.
For Mapaya, who was last year crowned the African Junior champion, it was a remarkable finish to what been an impressive start to his college career.
Mapaya managed to finish in the top three at almost every meet he competed in for TCU, including the NCAA Indoor Championships, Big 12 Outdoor Championships, Texas Relays and UF Tom Jones Memorial.