United States professional tennis player, Serena Williams, and Kenyan marathon runner, Dennis Kimetto, were chosen as the United States Sports Academy’s September 2014 Athletes of the Month.

Williams defeated Caroline Wozniacki 6-3, 6-3 to win her 6th US Open Championship Title on Monday, September 8, 2014, in Flushing Meadows, N.Y.  Kimetto shattered the marathon world record by 26 seconds with the winning time of 2 hours, 2 minutes and 57 seconds at the 41st BMW Berlin Marathon in Berlin, Germany, on Sunday, September 28, 2014.

The runner-up to Williams in the female division is Professional basketball player Diana Taurasi, who scored an incredible 14 points in a fourth-quarter comeback against the Chicago Sky during the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) Finals on Friday, September 12, 2014. Taurasi lead the Phoenix Mercury to a three-game sweep and their third WNBA title.

Finishing second in the male division was United States track and field athlete Justin Gatlin, who earned a double win in the 100 meter and the 200-meter race at the final International Association of Athletics Federation Diamond League event of the season, the Memorial van Damme, on Friday, September 5, 2014, in Brussels, Belgium. Gatlin, who finished the IAAF season undefeated, completed the 100-meter race in 9.77 seconds and the 200-meter race in 19.71 seconds.

Third place September recipients are the professional track and field athlete, Dawn Harper Nelson, in the female category and United States professional baseball player, Jordan Zimmermann, in the men’s category.

Nelson won the women’s 100-meter hurdles title at the International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF) Continental Cup held September 13-14, 2014, in Marrakech, Morocco. Nelson finished in a meet-record time of 12.47 seconds.

Zimmermann pitched an outstanding no-hitter during the regular-season finale and Washington Nationals 1-0 victory over the Miami Marlins on Sunday, September 28, 2014.

Williams and Kimetto are now eligible for the Academy’s male and female 2014 Athlete of the Year Award. For the 30th consecutive year, the Academy will oversee the worldwide online voting that will take place in December. This prestigious award is currently done in conjunction with NBC Sports.

The public is invited to participate in the worldwide Athlete of the Month nomination and ballot voting processes. 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 sports university’s online edition of The Sport Update.