June 24, 2012
Eugene, Ore. - Former Fighting Illini thrower Gia Lewis-Smallwood earned a trip to the 2012 London Olympic Games Sunday night at the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials at Hayward Field in Eugene, Ore.
The 2001 Illinois graduate finished a "disappointing" sixth place in the discus at the Trials with a toss of 192 feet, 10 inches, but earned a spot on the U.S. Olympic team thanks to her previously meeting the "A" standard of 203 feet, 5 inches. Lewis-Smallwood competed for Team USA at the 2011 World Championships in in Daegu, South Korea, but this will be her first Olympic experience.
Lewis-Smallwood is a native of Champaign and attended Centennial High School before competing for the Illini from 1998-2001. She was a Big Ten Champion and All-American in the discus in 2001. She currently lives in Champaign and trains with Illinois men's track and field coach Mike Turk.
The 2012 London Olympics run from July 27-Aug. 12, with the discus throw taking place on Aug. 3 and Aug. 4.