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Olympic Trials: Three Wildcat Hopefuls Chase Olympic Dreams

Two former K-State athletes competing at Olympic Trials


June 21, 2012

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MANHATTAN, Kan. - A trio of Kansas State Wildcats are preparing to chase their Olympic dreams this month. Back-to-back NCAA high jump champion Erik Kynard is hoping to qualify for Team USA this weekend and senior heptathlete Ryann Krais is set to compete on the final weekend of the U.S. Track and Field Olympic Trials next week. Freshman Alyx Treasure is ranked No. 2 in her native Canada and has her sites set on a spot on the Olympic team in the women’s high jump as well.

The U.S. Olympic Trials begin Friday in Eugene, Ore., where action will run through July 1st at legendary Hayward Field. TrackTown USA will be buzzing with the best athletes in America looking to represent the Red, White and Blue in London this summer for the 2012 Olympic Games. The Canadian Trials are slated for June 27-30 in Calgary.

Kynard leapt a new school record at the NCAA Championships as he is the first Wildcat to clear 7-08.00 (2.34m). His mark also broke the Drake Stadium record in a dramatic high jump competition that saw the Wildcat and three-time NCAA champion Derek Drouin battle. Kynard is set to compete in the qualifying round of the high jump on Saturday at 4:20 p.m. Pacific time. The field will be narrowed down to 12 competitors at that time before jumping in the final on Monday at 5:50 p.m.

Krais won the Big 12 title in the heptathlon and also indoors in the pentathlon. At the NCAA meet, she finished 14th outdoors and fifth indoors. She has seen success in TrackTown USA, where she finished second at the 2011 USA Championship in the heptathlon. Last year, Krais scored 6,030 points to finish second and narrowly miss a spot on Team USA for the IAAF World Championships.

Treasure is one of the most decorated young athletes from Canada. She won the Canadian Junior Championship last season and then stepped up to compete against older competition and finished fifth at the Canadian Championship. She finished fifth at the Big 12 outdoor meet this season as a freshman and won the indoor crown. She enters the Canadian Track and Field Trials ranked No. 2 at 6-00.50 (1.84m). She trails Jillian Drouin, sister of Indiana Hoosier Derek Drouin, by three centimeters. The qualifying round of the high jump is slated for 5:30 p.m. June 28 with the final the following day at the same time.

One former Wildcat will be in Eugene scouting the action for Team USA. All-American and two-time NCAA runner-up both indoor and outdoor, Gwen Wentland-Mikinski is a member of the USA Track and Field coaching staff for this year’s Olympic Games. She will serve as the women’s assistant coach for jumps.

Two other former Wildcats will be competing for a spot on the team as well. Amy Mortimer looks to qualify in the 1,500 meters. She will run the qualifying round on June 28. Olympian Christian Smith will be running the 800 meters, hoping to make the team again after a dramatic diving finish to qualify in 2008. The first round is set for 5:20 p.m. Friday with semifinals at 4:45 p.m. Saturday. The final will be Monday at 7:47 p.m.

NBC will be providing live coverage from the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials. The network will air coverage Saturday and Sunday as well as the final two days of the meet. The newly launched NBC Sports Network will also have coverage Friday and June 25-29. Check your local listings for times and to see if your cable or satellite provider carry NBC Sports Network.

The Canadian Track and Field Trials will be broadcast on CBC Sports. Check your local listings for times and to see if you get the network. The network will air two hours live on television and another two hours of live online steaming on its website.

Fans will be able to follow the action at the U.S. Olympic Trials online with live results provided by Updates will also be available on Twitter. Those wanting to stay in the know in that manner, can follow @kstate_gameday as well as @USATrack_Field. Hashtags #KStateTrack ,  #London2012 and #Eugene2012 will be used throughout the U.S. Trials. Information from Canadian Trials can be followed on @AthleticsCanada with a live results link available

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Tags: Alyx Treasure Erik Kynard K-State Kansas State Ryann Krais Track & Field

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