Aug. 16, 2016
By Leigh Torbin
NOTRE DAME, Ind. — Tuesday will be a great day for Irish fans north of the 49th parallel in particular as two Notre Dame alumna will be competing in the Rio Olympics for their home and native land of Canada.
With assurance of a shot at the gold medal on the line, Melissa Tancredi and the Canadian women’s soccer team faces Germany in semifinal action at 3 p.m. while Natalie Achonwa and the Candian women’s basketball team will play France in a quarterfinal at 9:15 p.m.
Yesterday | August 15
For the first day of the Olympics, Notre Dame did not have any representatives competing yesterday.
Today | August 16
— Melissa Tancredi will aim to assure herself of a chance to play for an Olympic gold medal as the Canadian women’s soccer team faces Germany in the semifinals. The match is set for 3 p.m. and will be streamed live at NBCOlympics.com
— Former Irish forward Natalie Achonwa will represent Canada in the women’s basketball quarterfinals tonight against France. Tipoff is set for 9:15 p.m. with NBCOlympics.com providing a live webstream.
Tomorrow | August 17
Assistant coach Monty Williams will help the U.S. men’s basketball team continue its quest for gold as the medal round commences. Team USA will face Argentina in the quarterfinals at 5:45 p.m. live on NBCSN.
— Gold: Amanda Polk, a 2008 Notre Dame graduate and four-time All-American with the Fighting Irish, is now an Olympic Champion. Polk was a member of the United States Women’s Eight that powered to victory (6:01:49) in the Grand Finale at Lagao Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The U.S. Rowing Women’s Eight has now won 11 consecutive world titles – every world championship and Olympic title since 2006. Polk is the first Notre Dame rower to earn a gold medal at the Olympics.
— Bronze: Former University of Notre Dame fencer Mariel Zagunis earned an Olympic bronze medal as the United States women’s sabre team defeated Italy 45-30 on Aug. 13. Zagunis, who closed out the victory in the anchor position, outscored her Italian opponents 15-9 Saturday in helping to lead the U.S. to bronze for the second time in as many times as the weapon has been contested on the team level. Zagunis and Team USA also brought home the hardware at the 2008 Games in Beijing. It was the fourth career Olympic medal for Zagunis, who also collected individual gold medals at the 2004 and 2008 Games and was the first American fencer to win a gold medal in Olympic competition.
— Bronze: University of Notre Dame graduate Gerek Meinhardt played the part of linchpin for the United States men’s foil team (Aug. 12), leading a 45-31 comeback victory against top-seeded Italy in the bronze-medal match to bring home the first medal for a U.S. men’s foil squad since the 1932 Los Angeles Olympics. Meinhardt returned to the piste against Andrea Baldini in the fifth of the match’s nine rounds with the U.S. trailing 20-17. With a target of 25 points, Meinhardt ripped off eight straight touches to give his team a 25-20 lead it would never relinquish. He out-scored his opponents 12-1 in his final two bouts as the U.S. continued to expand its lead. The team victory gave Meinhardt, who plans to retire from fencing to focus on his career following the conclusion of the Rio games, his first medal in three Olympic appearances. At his first appearance in Beijing in 2008, he became the youngest U.S. Olympic fencer of all time at the age of 17.
— Amanda Polk (@arpolk) August 15, 2016
Complete schedules for when the athletes with Notre Dame ties will be competing can be found at UND.com/Rio. Join the conversation on social media and support the Irish using #OlympicND.
Fans can also subscribe to the Irish in Rio calendar, which features detailed information about Notre Dame athletes, alumni and coaches as they compete in the upcoming Rio Olympic games. Subscribers will receive device alerts before each athlete competes, television information (if applicable) and a link to stream the competition from NBC’s Olympics website. This calendar is the best way to keep up with the Irish as they represent their countries and Notre Dame in Rio.
Fans can subscribe to the calendar with only a few clicks, and updated information will automatically be set to your device as it becomes available:
The networks and digital platforms of NBC will present an unprecedented amount of coverage, including the most live event coverage of any Olympic Games. All Olympic competition will be live streamed through NBCOlympics.com and the NBC Sports app.
— ND —
Leigh Torbin, athletics communications assistant director at the University of Notre Dame, has been part of the Fighting Irish athletics communications team since 2013. He serves as the football publicity team’s top lieutenant and coordinates all media efforts for Notre Dame’s lacrosse teams. A native of Framingham, Massachusetts, Torbin graduated from the University of Massachusetts in 1998 with a bachelor’s degree in sports management. He has previously worked full-time on the athletic communications staffs at Vanderbilt, Florida, Connecticut and UCF.