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Ortiz Named USA Track & Field Athlete of the Week

INDIANAPOLIS - Mandy Ortiz (Eagle, Colo.) has been named USA Track & Field’s Athlete of the Week after winning the women’s junior title at the World Mountain Running Championships in Krynica-Zdroj, Poland on Sept. 7.
© Nancy Hobbs

Ortiz is the first junior athlete to ever win an individual World Mountain Running title for Team USA. Ortiz covered the 4.65 km course in 22:56 to cross the line first, eleven seconds in front of runner-up Lea Einfalt of Slovenia. Ortiz led the women’s junior team to a combined score of 17 points to place second overall. Germany won the division with 9 points, with Russia third with 19 points.

“The whole race experience was extremely rewarding for me,” Ortiz said. “Getting to race internationally is something that I had always dreamed of, and winning the race was incredible. Running down the finishing stretch of the race, I thought in the back of my head that I might win, but I didn't really let myself believe it until I crossed the line.”

Ortiz is in her freshman year at the University of Colorado where she is running cross country for the Buffaloes.

“The training for the race fit really well with my training for cross country,” Ortiz said. “During the summer, I cross trained a lot because I had hip surgery in May, but when I did start running again, I tried to run on trails as much as I could and I included hills in most of my runs.”

Now in its 12th year, USATF’s Athlete of the Week program is designed to recognize outstanding performers at all levels of the sport. USATF names a new honoree each week and features the athlete on Selections are based on top performances and results from the previous week.

2013 Winners: January 9, Bobby Mack; January 16, Mary Cain; January 22, Ajeé Wilson; January 30, Duane Solomon; February 6, Chris Derrick; February 13, Jeremy Taiwo; February 20, Alysia Montaño; February 27, Galen Rupp; March 6, Jenn Suhr; March 13, Tia Brooks; March 20, Bridget Franek; March 27, Ben True; April 3, Darvis “Doc” Patton; April 10, Octavious Freeman; April 24, Erik Kynard; May 1, Queen Harrison; May 8, Tyson Gay; May 15, Jon Olsen; May 22, Mary Cain; May 29, Michael Tinsley; June 5, Mary Cain; June 12, Brianna Rollins; June 26, Brianna Rollins; July 3, Thomas Burns; July 10, Ryan Whiting; July 17, William Bell. Sr.; July 24, Jenny Simpson; July 31, Tia Jones; August 14, Brittney Reese; August 21, LaShawn Merritt; August 28, Megan Glasmann; September 4, Matt Tegenkamp; September 11, Mandy Ortiz

From USATF Statistician Glen McMicken

Gia Lewis-Smallwood moved to fourth on the all-time U.S. performers list in the discus at Zagreb on Sept. 3, handing Croatia's world champ Sandra Perkovic her first loss of the year with a 66.29m/217-6 throw in the fifth round.

Mike Rodgers zipped to a 9.97 to win the 100, taking the measure of Jamaica's Kemar Bailey Cole and Worlds silver medalist Justin Gatlin. Barbara Pierre added the women's 100 win with an 11.00 to give the U.S. a sprint sweep.

World and Diamond League champion David Oliver added another win in the men's 110H with a 13.25 to edge Moscow runner-up Ryan Wilson, while Worlds fourth-placer Dawn Harper-Nelson downed Olympic champ Sally Pearson in the 100H with a 12.63 clocking.

Shot put DL champ Ryan Whiting notched his 12th win of the season in the shot put, as the Worlds silver medalist threw a best of 21.60m/70-10.25.

U.S. indoor mile winner Will Leer raced to a PR in the 3000 with a 7:39.38, just ahead of Andrew Bumbalough, who also had a lifetime best with his 7:40.02.

Ben True became the 10th-fastest U.S. performer of all-time and moved into the American lead in the 3000 with his 7:36.59 to take second at Rieti, Italy, on Sept. 8.

The men's 100 saw a comebacking Walter Dix go under 10 seconds for the first time this season, winning at 9.99, with Ryan Bailey third at 10.10. Third place in the women's hammer went to Jeneva McCall, who threw 71.34m/234-1 to end up fifth in the IAAF Challenge for the year.

David Torrence lowered his PR in the 1500 to 3:33.23 to place sixth, and Emily Infeld had an impressive outdoor debut in the 3000, rolling to an 8:41.43 for fifth. Chelsea Reilly also PRed in that race at 8:47.34.

World championships silver medalist Nick Symmonds dipped under 1:45 for the seventh time this season to pick up his sixth win of the year in the 800 at Rovereto, Italy, on Sept. 3. Symmonds won in 1:44.75, almost a half second ahead of Kenya's Edwin Melly. Calesio Newman was the other U.S. winner, taking the 100 in 10.16.

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