By Grant Nussbaum
Four Wolverines went to London to vie for gold and glory in the 2012 Olympic Games, representing 3 different countries as well as Harvard-Westlake on the international stage.
Track and field assistant coach Felix Sanchez, wearing the colors of the Dominican Republic, claimed his second career gold medal in the 400-meter hurdles at the London Games. After winning all his preliminary races, Felix beat out United States runner Michael Tinsley by 0.28 seconds in the final. Sanchez became the oldest runner to win a race measuring 400 meters or less at 34. He teared up on the podium, dedicated the victory to his late grandmother.
While Sanchez was able to capture gold, Peter Hudnut ’99 and the U.S. men’s water polo team went into the 2012 games looking to quench their own thirst for gold after they were defeated by Hungary in the gold medal match of the 2008 Beijing games. The U.S. went 2-2 in preliminary play, but came up short after falling in the quarterfinals to Croatia by six goals. The U.S. then lost to Spain and Australia in consolation rounds to take eighth place in the tournament.
Joining the group of Wolverine Olympians, Ali Riley ’06, a dual citizen of the United States and New Zealand, competed for the second time in the Olympics as a defender for the New Zealand women’s soccer team. After New Zealand went 1-2 in preliminary play, it lost 2-0 to the gold medalist United States team in the quarterfinals, and was eliminated from the Olympic tournament.
Rounding out the Wolverines, Alex Osborne ’05 rowed for the United States in the Olympics for the first time at the London games. Osborne and his quad scull team placed fourth out of five in their preliminary heat and had to compete in the repechage elimination round, where Osborne’s team placed last and failed to continue in the Olympic competition.