Let the Games Begin

The countdown to the Summer Olympics has begun. Here’s a look at Dartmouth athletes headed to Rio—and those who hope to qualify.

Abbey D’Agostino ’14
Middle- and Long-distance Runner
Topsfield, Massachusetts

Runner-up, 3,000 meters, 2016 USA Indoor Track and Field Championships; 5th, 3,000 meters, 2016 IAAF World Indoor Championships

“Qualifying for the Olympics would grant me a powerful platform for reaching people,” says the seven-time NCAA champ. “I would feel so grateful to inspire others not just through the competition but by honestly expressing my personal account of what made the journey possible—the resources, time, people and incredible God behind it all.” 

Anthony Fahden ’08
Rowing: Lightweight Four
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Art History

8th, 2012 Olympics after winning final Olympic qualification regatta in Switzerland; bronze medal, 2016 World Rowing Cup; 7th, 2015 World Rowing Championship 

“Much of making a boat go faster is about communicating a technical change and getting everyone to implement it in precisely the same way,” says Fahden of rowing with three others. “When you sit at the starting line and wait for the officials to begin the race countdown, it’s very quiet and very still outside. Inside, at the 2012 London Olympics, I felt like I was going to burst.” 

Sean Furey ’04, Th’05, Th’06
San Diego
Engineering Sciences

37th, 2012 Olympics; winner, 2015, 2014 and 2010 National Championships; 5th, 2015 Pan American Games; 3rd, 2014 Pan American Sports Festival

With a personal best javelin throw of 272 feet, 7 inches the part-time Raytheon mechanical engineer hopes for a healthy return to the Games: “I’ve had major success at every level of my career, except for top international competitions, and I am determined to conquer this last obstacle.”

Madison Hughes ’15
Rugby Sevens
Lancaster, England, and San Diego

U.S. Collegiate All-American captain; led U.S. national team to a first-place finish at the 2016 NACRA Sevens Championships to qualify for the Olympics and a 6th-place finish in the 2015-16 HSBC Sevens World Series

“It has been a bit of a whirlwind, competing in tournaments all over the world and chasing my Olympic dream,” Hughes says. “The reward of our team booking our place in the Olympics was an incredibly special moment—just such a range of emotions, including euphoria, relief, validation and excitement.”

Josh Konieczny ’13
Rowing: Lightweight Doubles

Won Olympic trials in April; 8th, double sculls, 2015 World Rowing Championships; 4th, 2014 World Rowing Cup II; 10th, 2014 World Championships

“I’ve essentially put my life on hold to pursue rowing,” says Konieczny. “I’ve often questioned whether I made the right choice, but qualifying for the Olympics really lifted that burden. I’m overjoyed to have made the past three years of training that much more worthwhile.”

Alexi Pappas ’12 
Distance Runner (for Greece)
Eugene, Oregon

Set Greek national record (31:46.85) in the 10k at the Palo Alto Payton Jordan Invitational, May 1, 2016; ranked 46 in the world in the 10k

“Not only will I be the first Greek woman to compete in the 10,000 meters at the Olympics, but I will fulfill a dream I’ve had since I was young,” says the California-born Pappas, a dual citizen since December who is also pursuing a film-writing career. 

Evelyn Stevens ’05
San Francisco

24th, road race, 2012 London Olympics; set one-hour world record in March 2016; 2nd, 2016 La Flèche Wallonne Féminine

“Investment banking is like pro cycling: It’s not a career you have for 30 years,” the former Wall Streeter told Business Insider last winter. “You realize, ‘I’m going for it.’ For my career in cycling, every day it’s like, ‘What do I need to do better? What do I need to train?’ You can’t become complacent.”

Ben True ’08
Distance Runner
West Lebanon, New Hampshire
Art History

6th, 5,000 meters, 2015 IAAF World Championships; 6th, 5k, 2015 World Championships; 9th fastest American all-time in 5k

“I’d like to consider myself fairly nimble and spry, but I really wish I had a seat in my shower,” the American 5k record-holder tweeted in May as he trained with hopes of making the U.S. team at the July trials in Eugene, Oregon. Although the former Nordic skier briefly gave up running, he returned to it, he says, because “it is so innately me.” 

Kaitlin Whitehorn ’16
High Jumper 
Huntington, New York

7th, 2016 Indoor NCAA Championships; winner, high jump, 2014, 2015 and 2016 Outdoor Heptagonal Championships; winner, high jump, 2013, 2015, 2016 Indoor Heptagonal Championships

Even getting to the Eugene trials has the only All-American high jumper in Dartmouth history excited. “It’s an honor to be able to compete at the same level as professional athletes,” says Whitehorn. “I’m looking forward to going to a meet where every athlete wants to represent their country.”                            


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