Muffet, Orta Named SEC Track and Field Athletes of the Week

May 5, 2009

LEXINGTON, Ky. - A pair of Kentucky track and field competitors, Ashley Muffet and Luis Orta, were named Southeastern Conference Track and Field Athletes of the Week, the league office in Birmingham, Ala., announced Tuesday.

Senior thrower Ashley Muffet earned her second SEC Female Field Athlete of the Week honor after breaking the UK women's varsity record in the discus at the Jesse Owens Track Classic last weekend. Her winning throw of 187-8 not only topped UK's all-time list but also broke Ohio State's Owens Stadium Record. Muffet began her senior year in third-place all-time in school history for the discus but incrementally improved her standing this season by almost 18 feet to take over the event record. She currently ranks second in the SEC for the discus.

Muffet claimed multiple regional-qualifying marks for the sixth consecutive meet this season, making the NCAA cut in the discus, shot put and hammer at the Classic. She placed fourth in the shot put with a measurement of 51-6.50. In the hammer, she threw a distance of 185-2 to place fifth. She currently ranks among the top five in each of her field events within the SEC. This is Muffet's fourth honor after earning recognition earlier this season as well as February 2007 and April 2006.

Freshman Luis Orta earned his first career conference weekly honor after setting the UK freshman record in the men's steeplechase at the Classic. He posted a time of 8:58.83 to break the freshman standard that he set earlier this season. Orta, an experienced international runner, finished with a collegiate-best time. The Caracas, Venezuela, native earned a regional-qualifying mark for selection to the NCAA Mideast Regional later this month. Orta's steeplechase performance ranks third overall and as the top freshman time in the SEC. He also moved into fifth place all-time at UK in the event.

The two weekly awards up the Cats' total to six this season, after collecting seven honors last year.

The Wildcats will take this weekend off from competition in preparation for the SEC Outdoor Track and Field Championships at the University of Florida May 14-17.

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