Olympian Uceny returns home to Plymouth for Labor Day race

PLYMOUTH, Ind. --- Morgan Uceny normally laces up for world-class races, like the Olympics Games or World Championships. The 1500-meter specialist returned to her stomping grounds Labor Day weekend.

She took part in the annual Blueberry Stomp 5K.

"It's nice to have her come back and get back to her roots," said runner Megan Lebo.

Her roots dig deep into the race, one she loathed back in junior high, said mother Brenda Uceny.

"We had to take her home!" said Brenda. "She cried the whole time."

Uceny is a far cry from that first race. She won the 5K on Monday, clocking 16 minutes, 30 seconds. Uceny says she wanted to run faster yet the support from the Plymouth community reminds her to keep going.

"It's just kind of nice to bring you full circle and get back to some of the community that supports me so much," said Uceny.

Uceny is a former state champion in the 800 meters. She became a decorated athlete at Cornell University, setting school records and garnering All-American honors. Now Uceny sports an adidas kit and hopes to make a return trip to the Olympics.

"The depth is unbelievable [in the 1500 meters]," she said. "It's so hard to make the team anymore."

But if she nabs a spot on Team USA, Uceny still eyes hardware that eluded her in the London Games.

"I'd love to show the crowd a medal. I want to see what one of those looks like," said Uceny.

By the time the Rio Games roll around, Uceny will be 31-years-old.

"She still has two hard years of training," said Brenda Uceny. "She could still win."

For now, Uceny will celebrate Monday's win with a festival favorite: the blueberry doughnuts.

Based in Boston, Uceny will compete in the Fifth Avenue Mile before hanging up her spikes for 2014.

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