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Raytown South's Mitchell going to Olympics in 200 meters
July 30, 2012By Thomas Stueve of Raytown South High School
By LUCAS CLARK
Special to the Star
EUGENE, Ore. A week that started with disappointment for Maurice Mitchell finished with elation.
Mitchell, who didn’t make it out of the semifinals in the 100 meters seven days ago, finished second in the 200-meter final Sunday at the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials and qualified for the London Olympics.
He entered the race with the fastest qualifying time in the preliminary rounds and expectations as a favorite to win the 200 title. But Mitchell was also expected to do well in the 100, and he didn’t.
This time in the 200, he came through.
Mitchell, a former Raytown South sprinter who won back-to-back NCAA outdoor championships at Florida State, finished in 20.14 seconds.
“My main goal was to go out there and compete to the best of my ability,” Mitchell said.
“Go out there, execute and leave it all in God’s hands. I went out there and believed in myself and believed in my training.
“I’m really happy and thankful I was able to make this team.”
Mitchell powered out of the blocks and jumped out to an early lead coming around the corner, but Wallace Spearmon Jr. put together a final kick that proved to be too much for the rest of the field.
Spearmon won in 19.82 seconds, followed closely by Mitchell and Mississippi junior Isiah Young in third at 20.16 seconds.
Spearmon also made the 2008 Olympic team and initially finished third at the Olympic Games but was disqualified for stepping out of his lane.
Meanwhile, Mitchell has experienced unparalleled success in his early track career, and he will look to build on his accomplishments later this month.
He was chosen the Atlantic Coast Conference track performer of the year five times, receiving 10 All-American honors along the way.
He was an eight-time state champion at Raytown South and swept the 100, 200 and 400 meters at the state meet his junior and senior seasons.
Now, Mitchell can add Olympian to his already impressive track resume.
“I just trusted my coaches really,” Mitchell said, “and just believed in myself.”
Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/2012/07/01/3686439/raytown-souths-mitchell-going.html#storylink=cpy