Alpine skier Mikaela Shiffrin, biathlete Sean Doherty, men's doubles tennis team of Bob and Mike Bryan earn U.S. Olympic Committee's January honors
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Top performances throughout January earned alpine skier Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, Colo.) and biathlete Sean Doherty (Center Conway, N.H.) Athlete of the Month recognition, while the men's doubles tennis team of Bob Bryan (Sunny Isles Beach, Fla.) and Mike Bryan (Wesley Chapel, Fla.) received Team of the Month honors, the United States Olympic Committee announced today.
Shiffrin thrilled an overflowing Croatian crowd with a stunning 1.19 second Audi FIS Alpine World Cup slalom victory to take the prestigious Snow Queen Trophy and regain the lead in the world cup slalom standings. The wire-to-wire win rewrote history as the 17-year-old became the first American to win two world cup races in a single season before the age of 18. She also became the youngest woman to win two world cup slalom races in a single season since 1977. In her next slalom event two weeks later, Shiffrin triumphed again with a stunning come-from-behind win. She capped the month with a third-place finish on Jan. 29 to increase her lead in the world cup slalom standings.
Doherty made U.S. biathlon history when he became the first athlete to win three individual medals in a single world championships competition. He began the 2013 IBU Youth/Junior World Championships - which ran from Jan. 25-27 in Obertilliach, Austria - with a silver medal in the 7.5-kilometer sprint. Doherty posted a time of 21:16 with two penalties, just 3.6 seconds behind France's Fabian Claude. The following day, Doherty captured gold in the youth 10K pursuit with a commanding lead of 28.2 seconds. On the final day of competition, Doherty took silver in the youth 12.5K individual race.
The Bryan brothers became the most successful doubles team of all-time after capturing their 13th Grand Slam doubles title at the Australian Open, which ran from Jan. 13-26. The top-seeded pair defeated Robin Haase and Igor Sijsling of the Netherlands, 6-3, 6-4, in the final to overtake Australia's John Newcombe and Tony Roche's record of 12 Grand Slam titles. The match marked the duo's ninth Australian Open doubles final in the past 10 years and its sixth overall Australian Open doubles title. The previous week, the pair won the tune-up event in Sydney to hold a perfect 10-0 record for the month.
Skeleton's Noelle Pikus-Pace (Orem, Utah) and tennis' Sloane Stephens (Los Angeles, Calif.) earned second and third place in the female vote. On the men's side, track & field's Duane Solomon (Los Angeles, Calif.) finished runner-up, while freeskiing's David Wise (Reno, Nev.) took third. The USA-1 bobsled & skeleton team earned second in the team competition, while the U.S. Men's National Junior Hockey Team rounded out the voting in third.
Each National Governing Body may nominate one female, one male and one team per discipline. A voting panel selects the winners from the pool of nominees with online fan voting via Twitter accounting for 10 percent of the total vote.
1. Mikaela Shiffrin, Alpine Skiing
2. Noelle Pikus-Pace, Skeleton
3. Sloane Stephens, Tennis
1. Sean Doherty, Biathlon
2. Duane Solomon, Track & Field
3. David Wise, Freeskiing
1. Bob and Mike Bryan, Tennis
2. USA-1, Bobsled & Skeleton
3. U.S. Men's National Junior Team, Hockey