When it comes to winning, June’s top honorees for the United States Sports Academy’s Athlete of the Month are no strangers to it. Displaying expertise in golf and tennis for years, respectively, Jordan Spieth and Serena Williams succeeded again, this time gaining favor with those making selections on the online public ballot.
American golf star, Spieth, beat the competition and claimed the number one spot for the Athlete of the Month after he won the US Open at 21 years old. He is the fourth person to win this prestigious golf tournament at that age. He is the first golfer to win the Master’s and US Open back to back since Tiger Woods did it in 2002.
Cleveland Cavaliers’ basketball player LeBron James came in second for the men. He produced the first 40-point, 14-rebounds, 11-assist performance in recorded playoff history (since such stats were kept) in Game 5 at Oracle Arena. Baseball sensation Max Scherzer came in third for the voting. He pitched a no-hitter with 10 strikeouts and no walks, in Washington’s 6-0 victory over the Pittsburg Pirates, good for a Game Score of 97. In his previous start, he fired a 16-strikeout one-hitter with just one walk, a Game Score of 100 – just the 12th Game Score of 100 or greater in a nine-inning game.
On the women’s side, Williams was voted to the number one spot for Athlete of the Month after she beat Lucie Safarova 6-3, 6-7 (2), 6-2 to win the women’s French Open Title in Paris, France. The win was her third French Open Title, her third consecutive major title win since 2014, and her 20th Grand Slam overall title.
Track and field star Jenn Suhr was runner-up to Williams in the voting. She won the women’s pole vault at the USA Track and Field Outdoor Championships in Eugene, OR. Her winning vault was 15 feet, 9.75 inches, a world leading height. Francena McCorory, also a track and field champion, came in third in the voting for the women. She won the women’s 400 meter race at the Diamond League Adidas Grand Prix in New York City. In winning the race, she set a new track record with her time being 49.86, which is the fastest and leading time in the world for 400 meters.
The public is invited to participate in the worldwide Athlete of the Month nomination and voting process. Visit the Academy website at www.ussa.edu to submit your nominations each month, and then return to the website during the first two weeks of each month to vote for the male and female Athletes of the Month. The votes along with an Academy committee choose the winners who become candidates for the Athlete of the Year. The monthly and yearly winners are announced on the Academy’s website and in the Academy’s online edition of The Sport Update.
The United States Sports Academy is an independent, non-profit, regionally accredited, special mission Sports University created to serve the nation and world with programs in instruction, research, and service. The role of the Academy is to prepare men and women for careers in the profession of sports. For more information about the Academy, call 251-626-3303 or visit www.ussa.edu.