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Junior Olympians look to raise the bar in Wichita

WICHITA, KAN. - The nation's top youth track and field competitors are heading to Wichita, Kan. for the 2011 USATF National Junior Olympic Track & Field Championships, July 26- July 31 at Cessna Stadium at Wichita State University.

The Junior Olympics are the largest and most visible youth athlete developmental program in the world. Over 6,500 athletes, are set to compete in the six-day event. This year marks the introduction of the sub-bantam age group (ages 8 and under) to USATF youth events.

Entry for this championship is based on athlete performances at preliminary, association, and regional levels in order to advance to the national level.

A live webcast of the track events at the National Junior Olympics will be available online. Daily and week-long subscriptions along with additional details are available at

The 2011 National Junior Olympics meet will feature great competition from some of the nation’s top youth athletes. Highlighted below is only a handful of the many talented athletes competing this week.

National high school record holder Avione Allgood is set to duel again with Pan Am Junior Championships teammate Hannah Carson in the young women’s javelin. The pair will meet again in the discus, which Carson ranks first in, and the shot put, which is topped by Allgood.

Morgann LeLeux, another Pan Am competitor and high school record holder, will compete in the young women’s pole vault. Future Florida Gator and top-ranked indoor athlete Marquis Dendy enters the competition as the number one seed in the young men’s long and triple jump.

Fresh off a victory at the IAAF World Youth Championships, Nnenya Hailey will bring excitement to the young women’s 400m hurdles. World Youth teammate Aldrich Bailey Jr. will look for his second national title in the young men’s 400m following wins in the 200m and 400m at World Youth Trials.

Daunte Johnson enters the competition as the top seed in the sub-bantam boys’ 100m and long jump events, and the second seed in the 200m. On the girls’ side, Dynasty Mcclennon will look to dominate the sub-bantam girls’ short sprints as the top-ranked 100m and 200m runner.

Semira Killebrew is in position to sweep all three of the bantam girls’ sprints, with the best times in the 100m, 200m and 400m. Jalen Johnson came one centimeter short of the bantam boys’ long jump national record at the Region 15 meet, and will chase wins in the long jump and triathlon events.

Lauren Williams swept the midget girls’ sprints at the USA Youth Outdoor Championships and enters this meet as the top seed in the 100m and 200m. Sydney Tullai also had a successful USA Youth Outdoor meet with wins in the 1,500m and 3,000m. She will try to defend her National Junior Olympic titles in both of those races.

Marcus Krah won three events at the USA Youth Outdoor Championships and is the number one seed in the youth boys’ 100m hurdles and triple jump. Bryce Love, whose 100m and 200m times at his regional meet were faster than the national youth records, is the top competitor in all three of the sprints.

Paige Peschel tops the entry list in the intermediate girls’ 1,500m and 3,000m. Braden Smith will chase gold in the intermediate boys’ discus and shot put throws.

For more information on the 2011 USA Track & Field National Junior Olympic Championships in Wichita, visit the Junior Olympics page at .

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