BOULDER - Volleyball's Alexis Austin and cross country's Jake Hurysz earned CU Athlete of the Week honors on Tuesday for their athletic performances during the week of Oct. 8-14. CU's Athlete of the Week is sponsored by Silk®, Horizon® and International Delight®.
This is Austin's third CU Athlete of the Week honor of the season, including her second in as many weeks, and Hurysz's second of the year.
The freshman Austin helped the CU volleyball team earn a five-set, come-from-behind victory over Arizona State on Friday night. After dropping the first two sets, CU rallied to defeat the Sun Devils 17-25, 17-25, 25-18, 25-21, 15-9. Austin recorded 16 kills in the win and added four digs and one block assist. On Sunday, the 6-foot-2 middle blocker/outside hitter also led CU with 11 kills in a four-set loss to Arizona. The Houston native also added seven digs against the Wildcats. Austin averaged 3.00 kills, 1.22 digs, 0.11 blocks and 3.06 points per set in the two matches. The Buffs are now 13-7 overall this season and are tied for sixth in the Pac-12 at 3-5.
Hurysz, a junior, raced to a fourth-place individual finish and helped the men's cross country team to the team title on Saturday morning at the NCAA Pre-National Invitational. The North Carolina native ran the 8-kilometer course at E.P. 'Tom' Sawyer State Park in 23 minutes, 19.5 seconds.
The CU men were ranked seventh nationally heading into the weekend and defeated No. 3 BYU, which placed second, by 55 points. The Buffs finished with a team score of 79 while the Cougars recorded a score of 129. No. 15 Oregon placed third in the meet with 152 points. The CU men finished 4-11-12-22-23, and after their weekend performance, the squad moved up to No. 2 in the polls.
Also nominated for this week's award was junior Jenny Coleman (women's golf), junior Shalaya Kipp (women's cross country), freshman Julyette Steur (women's tennis), senior Jason Burstyn (men's golf) and senior Nick Kasa (football).
Coleman continued her brilliant play this fall by remaining in contention for medalist honors at the 2012 Ruth's Chris Tar Heel Invitational in Chapel Hill, N.C. After having an even par 72 and a 1-over par 73 in the first two rounds, she fell off the pace a little in the final round with a 7-over par 79, finishing tied for 30th at 8-over par 224. She is still having one of the best fall seasons in CU women's golf history with a stroke average of 73.4 and in 12 rounds, and she is a collective 14-over par.
Kipp was the top runner for the women's cross country team at the NCAA Pre-National Invitational on Saturday, coming in at 21st in her first race since the steeplechase preliminary rounds at the Olympic Games in August. Kipp finished the 6k course just out of the top-20 in 20:28.7.
Steur won two singles tennis matches at the ITA Mountain Region main draw in Las Vegas before falling in the Round of 32. Steur opened play on Wednesday with a straight-set winner over Manuela Pietzuch (Boise State), 6-2, 6-2 in the Round of 128. Two days later, Steur won her third straight match of the season with a three-set triumph over Alice Pacaut of Northern Arizona, 6-7(2), 6-1, 6-0. It was Steur's fifth career win when rallying from down a set to claim victory. Steur leads the Buffaloes in singles win during the fall season with four.
Burstyn led men's golf for the fourth time this fall, including one individual tournament, as he tied for 26th place with a 70-73-75--218 scorecard (2-over) in the Pac-12 Fall Preview in North Plains, Ore. He tied for the lead in the 60-man field with two eagles, and also recorded the third most pars with 37. He played the par-4's at 2-over for the meet, tied for 17th best in the field.
Kasa caught four passes for 71 yards and a touchdown in the football team's 51-17 loss to Arizona State on Thursday night. He continues to evolve as a tight end (it was just his seventh game with action at the position); he has 11 receptions for 239 yards (20.9 per) and a team-best three receiving touchdowns this season. He now has six receptions of 20 yards or longer, the most on the team. It is just the 21st time that a CU tight end has caught as many as three touchdowns in a single season, and he is just the second tight end in the last half century to catch one in three straight games (Tyson DeVree did it in 2007).