Olympic Update: Van Dalen Reaches 1500 Semifinals; Others With League Ties Advance
"I feel like I had a really strong race today. I felt really good out there," said Van Dalen in an interview with TV New Zealand. "I really wanted to make it through to the semis. I felt that I could do it. I mean, you're all equal on the line. The last 200 was a little bit pushy and shovy and they got away from me a bit but I feel like I did my best today and I'm pleased with the performance."
Van Dalen, who is competing for her native New Zealand, will next run in heat one of the 1,500 semis on Wednesday at 2:45 p.m. EDT. The race can be seen here or on NBC's Olympic Live Extra apps.
Prior to start of the games, America East highlighted those with these ties competing in the London games. Here are some updates on those competitors and coaches:
- Former America East Player of the Year Courtnay Pilypaitas (Vermont '09) has helped Canada reach the quarterfinal round of the women's basketball tournament for the first time since the 1984 games. The former Catamount star and current assistant coach at UVM averaged 7.8 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.0 assists in five qualifying round contests during which her team went 2-3. That included an 11 point, five rebound, four assist and three steal performance in a win over Great Britain on July 30. Pilypaitas' Canada squad will face the United States in the quarterfinal round on Tuesday at 2 p.m. EDT .
- Former Boston University men's basketball standout Brett Brown ('83) is the head coach of Australia's men's basketball sqaud and has led his team to the quarterfinal round after going 3-2 in preliminary round action. The Aussies stunned previously unbeaten Russia 82-80 Monday on a three-pointer by Patty Mills with :02 seconds left. Australia will face Team USA in the quarterfinals Wednesday.
- Ten-time America East track & field champion Viktoria Rybalko (Maine '03) will compete in the long jump competition for the second straight Olympics for Ukraine. The current Black Bear assistant coach begins preliminary round action Tuesday at 2:05 p.m. EDT.
- Ella Gunson, a transfer from Massey University in New Zealand who will play for Boston University's field hockey squad this fall, has helped her native country advance to the medal round for the first time in team history. The Black sticks went 3-1-1 in qualifying round action and will face either Great Britain or The Netherlands in the semifinals on Wednesday.
- Cleopatra Borel, a graduate of UMBC, competed in the shot put competition for the third straight summer Olympics. The Trinidad and Tobago native narrowly missed moving onto the finals, as her top mark was 18.36 meters, just .09 meters off the qualifying standard.
- Two-time America East women's basketball all-conference standout Rachel Vanderwal (Boston U. '06) played in four of Great Britain's preliminary round contests and totaled 11 points and eight rebounds as her team went 0-5 and failed to reach the quarterfinals.
- Hartford head women's soccer coach John Natale is serving as a video analysis coach for Team USA, which is facing Canada in the semifinals on Monday at 2:45 p.m. EDT on NBC Sports Network.
- Three former Boston University crew student-athletes competed in London with Florian Mennigen ('06) claiming a gold medal for Germany as part of its men's eight boat. Jozef Klaassen ('07), a member of the Netherlands men's eight team, placed seventh ,while Meindert Klem ('10) also competed.