Kentucky junior Luis Orta is Southeastern Conference Cross Country Male Athlete of the Week.
Competing in the Wildcats’ season opener, on a course that stretched through San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park, Orta claimed the individual championship and led UK to a second-place finish in the San Francisco Invitational.
Orta, from Caracas, Venezuela, covered the 8,000-meter course in 24 minutes, 25 seconds to win by one second.
San Francisco topped UK for team honors, 33-54, with California third (80) in the eight-team field.
The UK women also placed second at San Franciso, paced by Chelsea Oswald, who covered 5,000 meters in 17:26 to place second only to Cal’s Chelsea Reilly. Cal edged UK 37-39 for team honors, followed by San Francisco (49).
Following for the Wildcats were freshmen Taylor Wendler in seventh and Anna Bostrom in eighth, then sophomore Cally Macumber in ninth.
Other SEC weekly award winners are Georgia junior Kristie Krueger (Female Athlete), Arkansas’ Stephanie Brown (Female Freshman) and Mississippi State’s Nick Perkins (Male Freshman).