UNLV CROSS COUNTRY’S NATALIA RUIZ NAMED MOUNTAIN WEST ATHLETE AND FRESHMAN OF THE WEEK
Ruiz won her third consecutive race last week at Utah State
UNLV cross country’s Natalia Ruiz was named both the Mountain West Athlete and Freshman of the Week, the league announced Tuesday. It marks the second individual weekly award for Ruiz and Rebels this season as she was also recognized as the league’s Freshman of the Week on September 28.
Ruiz, originally from Madrid, Spain, won her third straight race as she took first place in the 5k at the Steve T. Reeder Memorial Invitational last Friday, which was hosted by Utah State at the Steve & Dona Reeder Cross Country Course.
On a cold, rainy day, Ruiz took medalist honors by almost 19 seconds in a time of 18:25.2 running against athletes from the University of Utah, Utah State University and the College of Idaho.
“We are very proud of Natalia,” said UNLV Track & Field/Cross Country Head Coach Dorian Scott. “She has really shown what type of class she is, gapping the field and winning by such a large margin, which is not easy to do in cross country. She has provided a big boost to the program and we are very excited about the results we have seen thus far. The team is performing at an incredible level under Coach Zaven (O’Bryant) and we are looking forward to riding this momentum into the Mountain West Conference meet at the end of this month.”
Ruiz also took first place at the UC Riverside Invitational and at the San Diego City College Downey Invitational in September.
NEXT FOR THE REBELS: UNLV will be back in action on Saturday, October 16 at the Highlander Invitational in Riverside, California, hosted by UCR.