There were 17 athletes with Minnesota connections competing in the Rio Olympics. Much attention was been paid to the four Minnesota Lynx -- Maya Moore, Lindsay Whalen, Seimone Augustus and Sylvia Fowles -- who are part of the women's basketball team that swept through its competition to win the gold medal.

Here's a link to Jim Souhan's story from the gold medal game, in which Hutchison native Lindsay Whalen scored 17 points to help the United States beat Spain.

And here is Souhan's column about the team that he wrote following the gold medal game.

Here's a look at the rest of the Minnesota contingent.

HASSAN MEAD

Sport/event: Track/men’s 5,000 meters

Minnesota connection: From Minneapolis, former Gopher

Update: Fell during his heat but appealed and was granted a spot in the finals, where he finished 11th

Background: At Minneapolis South, he set a state record as he won the Class 2A cross-country title in 2006. He went on to the U, where he won nine Big Ten titles in track and cross-country, was an eight-time All-America and set four school records that still stand.

The road to Rio: Last fall, Mead ran in the world championships for the first time, placing 15th in the 10,000. He did not finish the 10,000 at the Olympic trials but came back to run second in the 5,000 in 13:35.70.

Olympic experience: Debut

Did you know? Mead won five of his Big Ten championships in 2008-09, with titles in cross-country, the indoor 3,000 and 5,000 and the outdoor 5,000 and 10,000.

Follow him: @hassyhass35 (Twitter, Instagram)

 

GARRETT BENDER

Sport/event: Men’s rugby

Minnesota connection: From Minneapolis, attended Washburn High School

Update: The team was eliminated from medal contention.

Background: Bender helped Washburn win a state high school rugby championship and made his debut with the U.S. men’s sevens team in 2012. He is known for his combination of speed and toughness; he and forward partner Danny Barrett are known as the “Bash Brothers.’’

The road to Rio: In 2015, Bender was a member of the U.S. team that defeated Canada in the final of the NACRA Sevens Championships, qualifying the Americans for the Olympics. He also was part of the U.S. team that won bronze at the Pan Am Games last summer, and he was named to the 12-man Olympic roster after appearing in 39 of the U.S.’ 57 matches in 2015-16.

Olympic experience: Debut

Did you know? An outstanding linebacker in high school, Bender was recruited to play football at St. Cloud State before switching to rugby full-time.

Follow him: @rugbybender (Twitter, Instagram)


 

ANDY BISEK

Sport/event: Wrestling/Greco-Roman, 75 kilograms (165 pounds)

Minnesota connection: From Chaska, member of Minnesota Storm wrestling club

Update: Eliminated after winning one of two matches.

Background: Bisek wrestled at Chaska High School, with his best state tournament finish a third place in 2004. He attended Northern Michigan University, developed his skills at the school’s training center for U.S. Greco-Roman athletes and has participated in four world championships.

The road to Rio: In 2014, Bisek ended a five-year medal drought for American Greco-Roman wrestlers at the world championships, taking a bronze. He repeated as world bronze medalist in 2015 and enters the Olympics ranked fifth in the world.

Olympic experience: Debut

Did you know? Many members of the Bisek family are beekeepers, a hobby he intends to pursue in the future.

Follow him: @Biseks_Stache (Twitter)

 

 

BEN BLANKENSHIP

Sport/event: Track and field/men’s 1,500 meters

Update: Finished eighth.

Minnesota connection: From Stillwater, former Gopher

Background: A two-time state high school champion in the 1,600 meters, Blankenship became a four-time All-America and won three Big Ten titles at the U. He still holds school records in the mile (3 minutes, 57.87 seconds), 3,000 (7:52.52) and 1,500 (3:39.77).

The road to Rio: Blankenship fell just short of making the U.S. team for the world championships last year and entered this season determined to get to the Olympics. He finished third in the 1,500 at the Olympic trials, edging 2012 Olympic silver medalist Leo Manzano by .44 of a second to earn the final berth for Rio.

Olympic experience: Debut

Did you know? He was the first Gophers miler to break the four-minute mark.

Follow him: @benfblankenship (Twitter, Instagram)

 

 

KELLY CATLIN

Sport/event: Track cycling/women’s team pursuit

Minnesota connection: From Arden Hills, attended Mounds View High School

Update: The U.S. finished with the silver medal.

Background: A former soccer player, Catlin began cycling when her brother talked her into trying a race. USA Cycling discovered her during a standout performance at the 2014 Nature Valley Grand Prix, when she was named best young rider at the Twin Cities race.

The road to Rio: Catlin began track cycling only 18 months ago after starting out in mountain bike and road racing. She won silver at the 2015 Pan Am Games in team pursuit, and in March, her foursome captured the U.S.’ first-ever world championship in the event.

Olympic experience: Debut

Did you know? Catlin plans to attend medical school and is pursuing a degree from the University of Minnesota in mathematics and Chinese.

Follow her: @kelly_catlin (Twitter)

 

 

KIANA EIDE

Sport/event: Rhythmic gymnastics/group

Update: Eliminated in group qualification round.

Minnesota connection: Former St. Francis resident

Background: A gymnast since age 4, Eide has been part of the U.S. senior national team for three years. She and her father, Troy, moved to Northbrook, Ill., in 2014 so Kiana could train with the U.S. group.

The road to Rio: Eide is part of a five-member team that earned the U.S. group its first Olympic berth since 1996, when it was awarded an automatic spot as host country. The group won one gold and two silver medals at the Pan American Games last summer, then finished 13th at the 2015 world championships to qualify for the Olympics.

Olympic experience: Debut

Did you know? Eide’s parents own and operate Hong Kong Delight, a Chinese restaurant in St. Francis.

Follow her: @kianaeide (Instagram)

 

KATHRYN JOHNSON

Sport/event: Women’s rugby

Update: The team was eliminated in quarterfinals by New Zealand.

Minnesota connection: Graduated from Hopkins High School

Background: One of the most experienced players on the 12-woman U.S. roster, Johnson made her Women’s Sevens Series debut in 2013. She brings a wide skill set, with her knowledge of the game supported by her ability to kick and pass.

The road to Rio: Johnson is one of five players on the Olympic roster who helped the U.S. win bronze at the 2013 Rugby World Cup Sevens, which gave the program important momentum toward the Olympics. She added a Pan Am Games silver in 2015.

Olympic experience: Debut

Did you know? Johnson founded the Youngbloodz, a rugby sevens club in Minneapolis.

Follow her: @Johnson7Kj (Twitter)

 

GWEN JORGENSEN

Sport/event: Women’s triathlon

Minnesota connection: Lives in St. Paul

Update: Won the gold medal

Background: A Wisconsin native and former Badgers athlete in track, cross-country and swimming, Jorgensen took up triathlon in 2010 and was an instant success.

The road to Rio: Jorgensen finished the 2014 and 2015 seasons ranked No. 1 in the world. In 2013, she became the first U.S. woman to win an ITU World Triathlon Series race; she made more history by winning a record 12 in a row, a streak that ended in April.

Olympic experience: Finished 38th in 2012 after a flat tire during the bike leg.

Did you know? Jorgensen is a foodie who plans “eat-cations’’ to try out new Twin Cities restaurants.

Follow her: @gwenjorgensen (Twitter, Instagram)


 

MEGAN KALMOE

Sport/event: Rowing/ women’s quad sculls

Minnesota connection: Born in Minneapolis

Update: Kalmone and the U.S. finished a disappointing fifth.

Background: After graduating from the University of Washington in 2006, Kalmoe moved to US Rowing’s training center in Princeton, N.J., and has been part of the national team ever since. She has rowed on seven world championship teams, winning one gold medal and two silvers.

The road to Rio: In 2014, Kalmoe rowed in the pair and won a silver medal at the world championships. The following year, she did not earn a place in the world championships in that boat — but she was named to the quad sculls, which won the first-ever world title for the U.S. in that event and qualified it for the Olympics.

Olympic experience: Rio will mark the third Summer Games for Kalmoe, who won bronze in the women’s quad sculls at the 2012 Games.

Did you know? Kalmoe walked on at Washington as a sophomore and developed into an All-America and team captain.

Follow her: @megankalmoe (Twitter, Instagram)

 

HEATHER MILLER-KOCH

Sport/event: Track and Field/Heptathlon

Minnesota connection: St. Cloud State alumna, former St. Paul resident

Update: Miller-Koch won the 800-meters event Saturday, and finished 18th in the heptathlon

Background: The 2010 NCAA Division II champion in pentathlon, Miller-Koch was a 10-time All-America at St. Cloud State and won 15 Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference titles. She also played basketball at SCSU.

The road to Rio: For several years, Miller-Koch balanced her life as an athlete with a career as an operating-room nurse. She worked at St. Paul’s United Hospital until moving to the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Chula Vista, Calif., to train full-time in 2015; in June, she finished second at the Olympic trials to earn a place in Rio.

Olympic experience: Debut

Did you know? Miller-Koch is coached by her husband, Ryan Koch, and both coached track at Concordia (St. Paul).

Follow her: @hmillerkoch (Twitter, Instagram)

 

 

PAULA LYNN OBANANA

Sport/event: Badminton/women’s doubles

Minnesota connection: Former Arden Hills resident

Update: Lost 2-0 on Saturday to China, suffering a third sweep in as many days.

Background: Obanana was a member of the Philippines junior national team before she and her parents, Paul and Nenita, emigrated to the Twin Cities in 2006. She teamed with doubles partner Eva Lee in 2010 and now trains in Southern California.

The road to Rio: The duo rose in the world rankings during a 2015 season that included a gold medal at the Pan Am Games. They secured their Olympic berth on the strength of their world ranking and are the top-ranked team in the Pan Am zone (31st overall).

Olympic experience: Debut

Did you know? Obanana became a U.S. citizen in 2011.

Follow her: @PaulaBee05 (Twitter), @paula_lynn_obanana (Instagram)


 

DAVID PLUMMER

Sport/event: Swimming/men’s 100-meter backstroke

Minnesota connection: Lives in Minneapolis, former Gopher, swim coach at Wayzata High School.

Update: Won the bronze medal in the 100 back.Swam in the preliminaries of the 4x100-meter medley relay and earned a gold medal when Michael Phelps and Co. won the finals.

Background: The Oklahoma native was an 11-time All-America with the Gophers and still holds school records in the 100-yard backstroke (46.32 seconds) and 200 back (1:42.41). He has lived and trained in the Twin Cities for several years and is coached by the Gophers’ Gideon Louw and Kelly Kremer.

The road to Rio: After missing a berth in the 2012 Olympics by .12 of a second, Plummer persevered and won a silver medal in the 100 back at the 2013 world championships. He placed second in the Olympic trials in June to become the first Gophers swimmer in 52 years to make the U.S. Olympic team, and his season-best time of 52.12 is the fastest in the world this year.

Olympic experience: Debut

Did you know? Plummer is among 43 fathers on the Olympic team; he and his wife, Erin, are parents to Will (2) and Ricky (10 weeks).

Follow him: @davideplummer (Twitter), @plumm006 (Instagram)

 

ALISE POST

Sport/event: Cycling/ women’s BMX

Minnesota connection: From St. Cloud, attended St. Cloud Tech High School

Update: Won silver medal.

Background: Post has been a force in her sport since turning pro in 2006 at age 15. The former high school gymnast has persevered through a string of injuries — and the death of her mother, Cheryl, in 2014 — to maintain her place as the top woman rider in the nation, with six consecutive U.S. titles.

The road to Rio: Post earned her second Olympic berth with a bronze medal at the world championships in May, the third time she has made the podium at worlds. She enters the Rio Games in third place in the UCI elite women’s rankings.

Olympic experience: Post competed at the 2012 London Olympics and finished 12th after a crash in the semifinals.

Did you know? Post is engaged to Sam Willoughby, a BMX star from Australia, and has been planning an April wedding while training toward the Olympics.

Follow her: @alisepost11 (Twitter, Instagram)

RACHEL BLOUNT