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    Sunday, January 4, 1998

    Four more make U.S. Olympic team

     WEST ALLIS, Wis. (AP) -- First-time Olympians Amy Sannes and Marc Pelchat qualified for the U.S. long-track speedskating team in the 500-meter event Sunday.
     They were joined by Casey FitzRandolph and Jennifer Rodriguez, who qualified in the 1,000 Sunday after earning spots on the team in two other events during the first round of Olympic trials at the Pettit National Ice Center.
     Pelchat, a former college hockey player from Chelmsford, Mass., will be the oldest member of the team at 30 after qualifying for the fourth and final berth in the men's 500. Making the Olympics was a remarkable feat considering he has been a long-track speedskater for only two full years.
     "It almost doesn't seem real to me," Pelchat said. "After I finished the 500, I couldn't wipe the smile off my face. It's an emotional time for me."
     Sannes, a 20-year-old from St. Paul, Minn., finished 24th out of 25 competitors in the 500 at the 1994 Olympic trials. Now, she's going to Nagano.
     "It's been a goal of mine for a while to make the Olympic team," she said. "It should be a fun time."
     FitzRandolph, expected to be one of the top U.S. top male hopefuls in the 1,000, failed to earn one of the three positions on the team that were decided last week. But the 22-year-old cut more than a half-second off his time Sunday to earn the fourth spot.
     "That's the first time this season I've been close to where I want to be," said FitzRandolph, who has struggled to adjust to the new clap skates.
     He previously had qualified for the 500 and 1,500 at Nagano.
     Rodriguez, 21, is a former in-line skater who has been competing on ice for only two seasons. She qualified in the 1,000 after earning spots in the 1,500 and 3,000 a week earlier.
     The final member of the team -- three each for the men's 10,000 and women's 5,000 -- will be determined Monday.
     Also Sunday, the team for the World Sprint Championships was chosen. The event, to held Jan. 24-25 in Berlin, will feature Christine Witty, Rebecca Sundstrom, Moira D'Andrea and Sannes on the women's team and Nathaniel Mills, Pelchat and Timothy Hoffman for the men.
     Hoffman is on the team because FitzRandolph, the top qualifier, declined the spot so he could work on his pre-Olympic training in Calgary.
     WEST ALLIS, WIS. (AP) -- Results Sunday from the U.S. Long Track Speedskating Olympic Trials at the Pettit National Ice Center (all race distances in meters):
     1, Casey FitzRandolph, Verona, Wis., 36.75. 2, Marc Pelchat, New Chelmsford, Mass., 37.07. 3, Nate Mills, Washington, 37.50. 4, Eric Klein, Whitefish Bay, Wis., 38.11. 5, Brendan Eppert, St. Louis, Mo., 38.13. 6, Kevin Curtis, Malaga, Wash., 38.34. 1,000
     1, KC Boutiette, Tacoma, Wash., 1:13.29. 2, Fitz Randolph, 1:13.59. 3, Mills, 1:13.73. 4, Tim Hoffmann, Waukesha, Wis., 1:14.14. 5, Dave Tamburrino, Saratoga Springs, N.Y., 1:14.67. 6, Dave Cruikshank, Pewaukee, Wis., 1:14.93.
     1, Chris Witty, West Allis, Wis., 39.83. 2, Becky Sundstrom, Glen Ellyn, Ill., 40.31. 3, Amy Sannes, St. Paul, Minn., 40.76. 4, Kim Strzykalski, East Troy, Wis., 40.82. 5, Moira D'Andrea, Saratoga Springs, N.Y., 41.06. 6, Tama Sundstrom, Glen Ellyn, Ill., 41.49. 1,000
     1, Witty, 1:18.75. 2, R. Sundstrom, 1:20.41. 3, Jennifer Rodriguez, Miami, 1:20.82. 4, Sannes, 1:21.65. 5, D'Andrea, 1:21.86. 6, T. Sundstrom, 1:23.48.