With the Opening Ceremonies of the London Games set to take place Friday night, the nation won’t just be glued to outstanding athletes from across the world trying to bring home gold for their respective countries, but will get to watch several great athletes with ties to the Pittsburgh-area trying to win a gold medal for the United States.
Here’s a look at those to keep an eye on during the London Games.
Trevor Barron- Track and Field: Barron, a Pittsburgh-native, will be the youngest athlete to compete in track and field for the United States. He’s 19-years old in and will participate in the 20 kilometer race walk. The final, scheduled for August 4, will feature Barron as a favorite after breaking the American record in the event during the trials, finishing in one hour, 23 minutes.
Lauryn Williams- Track and Field: This will be the third Olympics for the sprinter Williams, from Rochester, PA. She won silver in the 100m in 2004, but a dropped baton during the 2008 Olympics cost her a second chance at a medal. She gets another chance as a member of the Team USA relay pool.
Allison Schmitt-Swimming: Schmitt is probably the most notable Pittsburgh athlete competing in the games. She has the chance at probably three medals, racing in two individual events and will also race in the the 4×100-meter freestyle and 4×200-meter freestyle relay. Although she graduated high school in Michigan, Schmitt was born in Pittsburgh.
Jake Herbert-Wrestling: Herbert also has a chance at a medal, wrestling at 84 kilograms. He graduated from North Allegheny High School and was a 2003 Pennsylvania state champion. In addition, Herbert was was a two-time NCAA champion, three-time Big Ten Conference champion, and four-time NCAA All-American. Herbert went 149-4 while at Northwestern University and won the 2009 Dan Hodge Trophy awarded to the best college wrestler in the nation.
Coleman Scott-Wrestling: Scott graduated from Waynesburg Central High School and perfected his craft at Oklahoma State University. Scott, who will wrestle at 60 kilograms compiled a record of 156-12 in high school while going on to win four WPIAL championships and three state crowns. He was also a four-time All-American at Oklahoma State and was an NCAA champion in 2008.
Cassidy Krug – Diving: Krug graduated from Mountour High School in 2003 and went on to attend Stanford University. She will compete in the 3-meter springboard.
Christa Harmotto- Volleyball: Harmotto is a middle-blocker for the Team USA Women’s Volleyball Team. She was a graduate of Hopewell High School before attending Penn State where she led the nation with a .486 hitting percentage. She was named the Big Ten Player of the Year in 2007, was nominated for the Honda Award in 2007 and 2008 and is a three-time AVCA All-American.
Swin Cash- Women’s Basketball: Cash is the most well-known of the group as after graduating from McKeesport High School , Cash helped lead the University of Connecticut women’s basketball team to national titles in 2000 and 2002. In her second WNBA season (2003), she led the Detroit Shock to their first ever WNBA title. She’s a prolific scorer and rebounder, as well as a capable ball handler and defender.
In addition, there are a couple other Penn State students competing in the 2012 London Games.
Miles Chamley-Watson, Fencing, from Philly
Megan Hodge, volleyball from Durham, NC