Minnesota athletes in the 2016 Summer Olympics

Greco-Roman wrestler Andy Bisek is one of 11 Minnesota natives who will be competing at the 2016 Summer Olympics this month.

Jeffrey Becker/Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Minnesota might be known for its Winter Olympics athletes, but that hasn’t stopped the state from putting together a sizeable contingency for this year’s Summer Olympics.

The state will be sending 11 natives in 10 different sports, to the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, including Minnesota Lynx guard Lindsay Whalen, a native of Hutchinson, Minn., who also played for the University of Minnesota. 

Here is a look at the Minnesotans and those with connections to the state who will be vying for Olympic gold:

Badminton:

Paula Lynn Obanana, women’s doubles

Hometown: Minneapolis/St. Paul

Olympic experience: 2008

Notable: Obanana is a doubles specialist who was born in the Philippines and grew up in St. Paul. The 31-year-old is part of a seven-person U.S. team that qualified in all five badminton events for the first time. She and doubles partner Eva Lee are ranked 29th in the world and won the gold medal at the 2015 Pan American Games.

 

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Basketball:

Seimone Augustus, guard/forward

Hometown: Baton Rouge, La.

Team/Club: Minnesota Lynx

Olympic experience: Two-time gold medalist (2008, 2012)

Notable: Augustus, 32, is in her 11th season the Lynx, who drafted her first overall in 2006. She’s averaging a career lows in points (10.2) and minutes (26.2) per game, but it hasn’t stopped the Lynx from starting the season 21-4. Augustus averaged 7.9 points and 17.6 minutes in eight games at the 2008 Olympics and 7.8 points and 18.1 minutes at the 2012 games, as the U.S. went undefeated in both tournaments.

 

Sylvia Fowles, center

Hometown: Miami

Team/Club: Minnesota Lynx

Olympic experience: Two-time gold medalist (2008, 2012)

Notable: Fowles, 30, is in her second season with the Lynx, who traded for her in July 2015. She’s averaging 13.2 points and 8.5 rebounds in 28.6 minutes per game this season after earning 2015 WNBA Finals MVP honors. The 6-foot-6 Fowles was Team USA’s leading scorer at the 2008 Olympics, averaging 13.4 points and 8.4 rebounds in about 18 minutes per game. She appeared in five games at the 2012 Olympics, averaging 6.0 points and 3.6 rebounds in 9.6 minutes per contest.

 

Maya Moore, forward

Hometown: Lawrenceville, Ga.

Team/Club: Minnesota Lynx

Olympic experience: Gold medalist (2012)

Notable: Moore has won three WNBA titles and a league MVP award since the Lynx drafted her first overall in 2011. The 27-year-old is averaging 19.4 points, 5.2 rebounds and a career-high 4.4 assists per game this season, earning three Western Conference Player of the Week honors. Moore averaged 9.0 points and 19.8 minutes per game at the 2012 Olympics, starting five games.

 

Lindsay Whalen of the USA Womens National Team and Cheryl Reeve during practice at Windward High School in Los Angeles, California on July 23.

Lindsay Whalen, guard

Hometown: Hutchinson

Team/Club: Minnesota Lynx

Olympic experience: Gold medalist (2012)

Notable: Whalen, 34, is averaging 9.8 points and 4.0 assists in 24.2 minutes per game this season. The 5-foot-9 guard has played for the Lynx since 2010 and has earned three All-WNBA first-team nods in her 13-year WNBA career. Whalen averaged 8.0 points per game in the 2012 Olympics.

 

Cheryl Reeve, assistant coach

Team/Club: Minnesota Lynx

Olympic experience: None

Notable: Reeve owns a 161-68 record in six-plus seasons as the Lynx’s head coach, leading the team to the 2011, 2013 and 2015 WNBA titles. She earned WNBA Coach of the Year honors in 2011 and has coached at the collegiate and WNBA levels for more than 27 years.

 

BMX: 

Alise Post

USA bmx athlete Alise Post poses for a portrait during the 2016 Team USA Media Summit at Beverly Hilton.

Hometown: St. Cloud

Team/Club: Redline Bicycles

Olympic Experience: 2012

Notable: Post, a 25-year-old St. Cloud Tech graduate, finished 12th at 2012 Olympics and earned a silver medal at the 2014 World Championships and bronze at the 2010 and 2016 World Championships. She was introduced to BMX racing as a 6-year-old and won the American Bicycle Associated national title at age 15.

 

Cycling: 

Kelly Catlin, team pursuit

Hometown: Arden Hills

Team/Club: NorthStar Development Cycling

Olympic Experience: None

Notable: Catlin, a 20-year-old St. Paul native, graduated from Mounds View High School in 2014 and is pursuing biomedical engineering and Chinese degrees at the University of Minnesota. She began track cycling in January 2015 after competing in mountain bike racing and was part of the USA Cycling team that won gold at the 2016 World Championships.

Catlin Kelly of the United States on the medal podium for winning the gold medal in the women’s cycling individual time trail finals during the 2015 Pan Am Games at Milton Time Trial Course. 

 

Greco-Roman wrestling:

Andy Bisek, 75 kilograms

Hometown: Chaska

Team/Club: Minnesota Storm

Olympic Experience: None

Notable: Bisek is the USA’s top-ranked wrestler at 75 kilograms (165 pounds) and placed third at the past two World Championships. The 29-year-old attended Chaska High School, where he placed third in the 2004 state wrestling championships.

 

Rhythmic gymnastics:

Kiana Eide

Hometown: St. Francis

Team/Club: North Shore Rhythmic Gymnastics Center

Olympic Experience: None

Notable: Eide was born in Fridley and attends high school in Northbrook, Ill. The 17-year-old competed at the World Championships the past two years and finished 13th overall in 2015.

 

Rowing:

Megan Kalmoe, quadruple sculls

Hometown: St. Croix Falls, Wis.

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Team/Club: New York Athletic Club

Olympic Experience: 2008 (fifth — double sculls), 2012 (bronze — quadruple sculls)

Notable: Kalmoe, a Minneapolis native, began rowing as a University of Washington as a sophomore in 2002 after attending high school at St. Croix Falls High School. She won a gold medal at the 2015 World Championships and silvers at the 2011 and 2014 championships. 

 

Rugby:

Garrett Bender, forward

Hometown: Minneapolis

Team/Club: Men’s Eagles Sevens

Olympic Experience: None

Notable: Bedner, 24, helped Minneapolis Washburn High School to a state rugby championship before attending St. Cloud State to play football. The 6-foot-4, 230-pound forward soon switched back to rugby, however, and made his Team USA debut in December 2012.

 

Katie Johnson, center

Hometown: Hopkins

Team/Club: Twin Cities Amazons W.R.C.

Olympic Experience: None

Notable: Johnson attended Hopkins High School and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where she was an All-American. The 24-year-old debuted for Team USA at the beginning of the 2013-14 season and was part of a rugby sevens squad that earned third in the 2013 Rugby World Cup. She helped the team to a fifth-place finish in the 2015 World Rugby Women’s Seven Series.

 

Swimming:

David Plummer, 100-meter backstroke

Hometown: Oklahoma City

David Plummer after the men’s backstroke 100m semi-finals in the U.S. Olympic swimming team trials at CenturyLink Center.

Olympic Experience: None

Notable: Plummer was a 14-time All-American at the University of Minnesota, from which he graduated in 2008, and resides in Minneapolis. The 30-year-old finished second in the 100-meter backstroke at the Olympic trials in June to earn a spot on Team USA. His best individual finish at the World Championships came in 2013, when he earned a silver medal in the 100 backstroke. He also earned a gold medal in the 400 medley relay in the 2011 World Championships.

 

Track and Field:

Ben Blankenship, 1,500 meters

Hometown: Stillwater

Olympic Experience: None

Notable: Blankenship, 26, qualified for the Olympics in the 1,500 with a third-place finish at the Olympic trial, holding off reigning Olympic silver medalist Leo Manzano on the final stretch. He was a two-time Minnesota high school state champion in the event and an All-American at the University of Minnesota.

 

Hassan Mead, 5,000 meters

Hometown: Minneapolis

Olympic Experience: None

Notable: Mead qualified by placing second in the 5,000-meter race. The 25-year-old was a six-time All-American at the University of Minnesota and a cross country state champion at Minneapolis South High School.

 

Heather Miller-Koch, heptathlon

Heather Miller-Koch reacts after competing during the heptathlon 800m in the 2016 U.S. Olympic track and field team trials at Hayward Field.

Hometown: Columbus, Wis.

Team/Club: Central Park Track and Field Club

Olympic Experience: None

Notable: Miller-Koch, 29, took second in the heptathlon at the Olympic trials, an event that includes several races, the shot put, long jump javelin and hurdles. A national champion at St. Cloud State, Miller-Koch was a 10-time NCAA Division II All-American and finished fourth at the 2014 and 2015 USA Outdoor Championships.

 

Hometown: Waukesha, Wis.

Olympic Experience: 2012

Notable: Jorgensen, a St. Paul resident, qualified for the Olympics last August at the Rio de Janeiro world qualification event. She is the two-time reigning ITU World Triathlon Series world champion and has won 17 gold medals in the series. Jorgensen finished 38th at the 2012 Olympics after her bike sustained a flat tire.

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