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Some 15,000 athletes will descend upon Houston, Texas for 14 days June 16-30. Among those will be Ava resident and high school teacher Coach Liz Kyger.
To qualify for the National Senior Olympics, an individual must be 50 years old or older and place 1st, 2nd or 3rd in a state qualifying game.
Coach Kyger qualified at Springfield, Ill., last summer where she placed 2nd in the 40K bike race and took 1st in both the 5K and 10K road races.
The 40K bike race will be held on Sunday, June 19 and the 5K will be Saturday, June 25, with the 10K the following day on June 26.
Coach Kyger was chosen to represent Missouri in the parade of Athletes on June 21 and will carry the Missouri flag during the presentation of the 50 states at that ceremony. She was picked after being nominated by a flurry of friends and family members.
There are 18 competitive sports being held with medals awarded in every 5-year age category. Sports include archery, badminton, cycling, tennis, swimming, track and field, race walking, basketball, volleyball, softball, road racing, table tennis, triathlon, bowling, power walking (demo only), golf, horseshoes, racquetball and shuffleboard.
These senior games have an even deeper significance for Coach Kyger. It will be the 30-year anniversary of the NAIA track and field championships where she earned All-American honors in the marathon also held in Houston, Texas, in 1981.