Follow all of Long Beach State's Olympians online throughout the London Games
July 23, 2012
Long Beach, Calif. - Continuing a tremendous Olympic tradition, Long Beach State will have eight former student-athletes representing their nations in the 2012 London Olympics. Long Beach State has had at least one representative in every Summer Olympic Games since the founding of the University.
Long Beach State's volleyball tradition is showcased this summer, as the Games feature seven former players involved in Team USA's efforts in London.
Highlighting those efforts is two-time Gold Medalist Misty May-Treanor, who along with her partner Kerri Walsh will try to win an unprecedented third straight Gold Medal in Beach Volleyball. May-Treanor, who was a two-time National Player of the Year at Long Beach State and led the 49ers to an undefeated season and a national championship in 1998, will likely again be one of the most recognizable faces in this year's Olympic Games.
Also returning as the defending Gold Medalists is the USA Men's National team. Long Beach State Hall of Famer Alan Knipe leads the team as the head coach, and the squad also features a number of 49ers as the team tries to secure Gold once again. Knipe, who won the 1991 National Championship as a player with Long Beach State and led the 49ers to the Final Four twice (2004, 2008) guides a team that features middle blocker David Lee, opposite David McKienzie, and outside hitter Paul Lotman. Lee was a key member of the 2008 Beijing Gold Medal team, while McKienzie was a three-time All-American and set an NCAA record with 58 kills in a match. The most recent 49er of the bunch, Lotman, was the National Co-Player of the Year in 2008 while leading the 49ers to the NCAA Final Four.
The USA Women's National team will also feature two stalwarts in Danielle Scott-Arruda and Tayyiba Haneef-Park. Scott Arruda is making a record fifth appearance in the Olympic Games, passing the mark that she tied with Tara Cross-Battle in the 2008 Beijing Olympics. The pair helped lead Team USA to a Silver Medal in Beijing, and will look to improve on that finish this year in London.
Also participating in this year's Olympics for the Belize National Team is Kenneth Medwood. The Long Beach State record holder in the 400m Hurdles with a time of 49.66, Medwood was a Big West Champion in the event, as well as a two-time participant in the NCAA National Championships.
Check back here for updates throughout the London Olympics for how your favorite former 49ers are doing at the games!
Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh will try to become the first pair to win three straight Gold Medals in Beach Volleyball, defending their victories in Beijing and Athens.
UPDATE - 8/8/12
May-Treanor and Walsh continued to impress in knockout play, dominating Italy's Cicolari and Menegatti 21-13, 21-13 to advance to the semifinals, and moved on to the Gold Medal match with a thrilling 22-20, 22-20 over China's Xue and Zhang. May-Treanor and Walsh will try to win their third straight Gold Medal against the other American team, Jen Kessy and April Ross.
Capping their comeback, May-Treanor and Walsh Jennings defeated Kessy/Ross 21-16, 21-16 to win their third consecutive Olympic Gold Medal and finish three Olympiads undefeated as a pair.
The USA Men's National Team, led by Alan Knipe, will start their defense of their Gold Medal on the morning of July 29 against Serbia in Group Play.
UPDATE - 8/8/12
The Americans lost one match in pool play to Russia, but advanced to the quarterfinals, where they lost to Italy 28-26, 25-20, 25-20.
Danielle Scott-Arruda, participating in her fifth Olympic Games, and Tayyiba Haneef-Park, playing in her third, will help team USA try to medal again after winning the Silver in Beijing four years ago.
UPDATE - 8/11/12
Danielle Scott-Arruda provided a spark for the Americans in a three-set win over China on August 1, making five kills and two blocks as Team USA won 26-24, 25-16, 31-29 to remain unbeaten.
The Americans picked up two more wins in pool play, finishing with a 3-0 win over Turkey to advance to the knockout round. In the quarterfinals, Team USA cruised past the Dominican Republic 25-14, 25-21, 25-22, advancing to Thursday's semifinals.
After beating South Korea 25-20, 25-22, 25-22 to advance to the Gold Medal Match, the Americans faced a rematch both from earlier in the London Games and from the 2008 Gold Medal Match against Brazil. Team USA started off the match with a dominant first set, but then lost the next three, falling 11-25, 25-17, 25-20, 25-17, winning the Silver Medal for the second straight Olympic games in the process.
Men's Track and Field
Participating on the Belize National Team, Kenneth Medwood's Olympics begin with the 400 hurdles opening round on the first day of Track and Field competition, August 3.
UPDATE - 8/5/12
Running in one of the first track and field events, Medwood advanced to the 400m hurdles semifinals with a time of 49.78, finishing fourth in the first heat.
Medwood finished his time in London with a 49.87 in the semifinals.