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Pittsburgh Female Athlete of the Week

| Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2007

Angelica Martinez

School: Schenley

Class: Senior

Sport: Cross Country

Notable: Angelica Martinez won her fourth consecutive City League cross country title Saturday at the Schenley Oval.

Martinez, who holds the course record of 19 minutes, 37 seconds, finished in 20:03.15. She swept the competition in the City League this year, winning each race she competed in.

"She's a naturally gifted runner," coach Jeff Abrams said. "She doesn't have to work as hard as some of the other women I've seen."

Abrams sometimes runs Martinez with the boys team to make her compete at a higher level. Abrams said he would like to see her top her personal best of 19:37 -- a time she recorded at the City League Championship her sophomore year -- at the PIAA championships Thursday.

Martinez was bothered by a nagging cold and an injury this season, but it didn't slow her down.

"I gave her some time off because I knew she would come through fine," Abrams said.

With only two seniors on the girls varsity team, Martinez was viewed as a leader.

"She always runs with the girls when she's completed her race," Abrams said. "She was so supportive in cheering them along. We had a young team, but she picked them up and brought them along well."

Abrams says Martinez is undecided about what she wants to do after graduation, but he expects her to return to Mexico and run in college.

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