Bernard grateful for second chance in London

LONDON (AP) – Roughly three months ago, U.S. wrestler Ali Bernard was on her parents’ couch in Minnesota thinking she had blown her last chance for an Olympic medal.

Bernard was heavily favored to represent the U.S. at the London Games after taking fifth at the 2008 Beijing Games and bronze at the 2011 world championships. But Stephany Lee took the American spot at 72 kilograms with a surprising and decisive win over Bernard at the U.S. Olympic trials in Iowa City.

Then Lee got popped for pot. Continue reading at

State’s athletes ‘go fer’ the gold

This Friday, Chas Betts will attend one of the most exclusive parties in the world when he marches in the Opening Ceremony of the London Olympics. Still, the wrestler from Albertville figures it will be pretty hard to top the bash his hometown threw for him Saturday.

About 225 people showed up at Neighbors Eatery and Saloon on Main Avenue to wish Betts well before he heads across the pond, where he will compete Aug. 6 in the 84-kilogram weight class in Greco-Roman wrestling at the Olympic Games. His mother, Pam, had the Olympic rings painted on her toenails as she hugged friends and relatives in the jam-packed bar. His wife, Kristi, sported gold eye shadow, and his grandma Nona handed out dozens of red, white and blue beaded bracelets she had made. Continue reading at