23 Aug Seminoles bring 25 athletes and coaches to Olympics
Florida State University was well represented at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Athletes and coaches took their talents from Tallahassee to the international level this past July.
The Tokyo Olympics were far from normal. Not only were they pushed back a year due to COVID-19, but the teams experienced many new norms.
Athletes had guidelines to follow to prevent a COVID-19 outbreak and performed in empty arenas. Nonetheless, the athletes and coaches persevered through the changes and gave fans the entertainment they wanted.
FSU sent more athletes and coaches than ever before to compete at one of the biggest stages in sports, as a total of 25 attended the games. Two of the athletes are current students and 23 are alumni. The sports included swimming, diving, women’s and men’s basketball, beach volleyball, track and field, soccer, softball and women’s golf.
Being a college athlete requires lots of training and dedication. While training for their team at FSU, they also have managed to work even harder to qualify for the Olympics. Whether it is the two current students or the alumni, the entire Florida State community has supported and helped guide them to become Olympians.
The women’s softball team has succeeded in recent seasons. Softball coach Lonni Alameda was the assistant coach for the Canadian team. While Coach Alameda is a United States citizen, she has represented Canada for the past 15 years in hopes of expanding the sport.
Her passion to help grow the sport is shown at FSU and at the international level. Alongside her on the field was alumni Kaleigh Rafter. The team won the bronze medal, making history for Canada’s softball program.
Swimmer and captain for the 2021-2022 season, Izaak Bastian showed why he is an important member of the men’s swimming team. Izaak is entering his senior year at Florida State this fall.
At the Bahamas National Championship this past summer, he not only qualified for two Olympic events but also broke three records. Being at the Tokyo games taught the 20-year-old a lesson that he will implement back in Tallahassee.
He learned being the best is not what it takes to be a great leader. While Bastian did not get on the podium, his time in Tokyo was still one to remember.
Gabby Carle, an FSU women’s soccer player, left Tokyo with a gold medal. She played on the Canadian team, who beat Sweden in penalty kicks.
Carle is the fifth Nole to win a gold medal at the Olympic Games. She was fortunate enough to make it to the international level when the roster was expanded to 22 players.
The 22-year-old has continuously shown her skills at FSU and through her representation with Canada. Gabby Carle is a well-known name for soccer fans and it will be interesting to see how her time in Tokyo will impact her performance in the upcoming season for the Seminoles.
While a few players and Coach Alameda stood out through the Olympics, each athlete or coach connected to FSU has inspired the staff, students and fans. These individuals showed what it takes to not only succeed locally but across the world. The ’Noles were very much present in Tokyo, and it is exciting to see what the future holds for them and all of FSU athletics.
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