Cavs in London: UVA among top Olympic 'countries'

Of the 14,000 athletes competing in the 2012 Summer Olympic Games, the 11 young men and women with ties to the University of Virginia – including a pair of gold medal winners– constitute one of the more successful "nations."

"The university community is proud of the efforts of our student athletes that are competing on the biggest stage of all," Virginia Athletic Director Craig Littlepage says in email.

Four of the now and future Cavaliers competing in London are swimmers, including Switzerland’s David Karasek (UVA Class of ’12). Breaking his own Swiss national record in the event with a time of 2:01.35, he finished 28th in the men's 200-meter individual medley, while countryman and incoming UVA freshman, Yannick Kaeser (’16), the national record holder in the men’s 200m breaststroke, finished 24th in his event.

The big UVA swim winners were Matt McLean (’11) and Lauren Perdue (’13), each earning a gold medal as a member of their respective 200-meter freestyle relay. Perdue says she underwent back surgery five months ago and never expected to make the Olympics, let alone win a gold.

"Having to deal with disappointment and injury this past year," says Perdue, "has made this experience even more meaningful to me."

A prominent UVA sports blog,, noted that the golds from Perdue and McLean tied UVA– as if it were a country– with South Africa in the gold standings and surpassed dozens of other countries. And there are Cavs still in the running.

For instance, Becky Sauerbrunn (’07) is a member of the favored U.S. Women's Soccer team that bested Canada during a nail-biting overtime in the semifinals to qualify for the final match against Japan on Thursday, August 9. And while the U.S. Women’s Field Hockey team suffered losses to put it out of medal contention, Paige Selenski (’13) and Michelle Vitesse (’13) each earned field time and may play for 11th place on Friday.

Cavaliers competed in several other disciplines, including rowing, equestrian, and tennis, garnering respectable finishes and often breaking national or personal records along the way. And Littlepage anticipates a warm homecoming.

"Due to their participation in the Games and their full dedication to their sports and countries, they are all champions," says Littlepage.

Read more on: olympicsUVA sports


I'm always struck by how these olympians say "I won a gold medal! Yipee!" after winning a medley race. You didn't win that gold medal, someone gave you some help along the way.

@Somebody ... thanks, mr. president.

I'm always struck by how these Sombodies feel the need to write comments when they lack even the most basic knowledge of what they're writing about.

Individual medley consists of a single swimmer swimming equal distances of four different strokes within one race. Of course they had help in training, which is why the first thing many do upon winning is thank their coaches and family, but the person who beats everyone else in the pool has every right to celebrate victory if it comes.

How's that foot sandwich workin for ya?

figured uva students would compete in the elitist out of touch pastime of equestrian. wonder if they receive scholarships so as not to have to drink local wines like the rest of us and put premium in the rover for competitions in the hamptons.

a lot of negativity... yall suck pretty bad

b17, how do you know that Somebody wasn't talking about the medley relay?

Even if it is called a relay it's still a medley of people in it. And in swimming they aren't re-laying any batons in anyone's hand so it's false advertising

Congartulations to our UVa Olympians! And in fact to all our Olympians.
And that includes Corey Cogdell, on the shooting team who got brutally attacked on her Facebook page by animal rights nitwits when she disclosed that she liked to hunt. She grew up in Alaska, wher hunting is widely accepted(unlike in some trendy PC environs). It went far beyond disapproval of hunting- some said she and her family should be killed. Sad.

Somebody - do you have a gold medal from the olympics?
Geez. When it's a relay race they all get a gold medal. They should all be extremely proud to be competing at that level. As individuals and as a relay.
A GOLD MEDAL - I don't care how an athlete acquired it, individually or as part of a team -- they should be screaming from the rooftops!
Just making it to Olympic Trials is a pretty big deal as an athlete. And here you are complaining that someone should not be proud if it's not an individual medal?

Geez is right

@ Hoolarious "b17, how do you know that Somebody wasn't talking about the medley relay?"

Because is he was then he wasn't commenting on the right article which says pretty clearly that David Karasek "finished 28th in the men's 200-meter individual medley." There is no other mention of a medley in the article.

b17, maybe he wasn't commenting specifically on the athletes in this article at all. He might have been commenting on Olympic athletes in general who win gold, and Karasek didn't win gold, so he can't have been talking about Karasek. It seems pretty obvious he was making a joke on the whole out-of-context quote from Obama about "you didn't build that yourself." Maybe it was too subtle. (The irony, of course, is that it was Romney, when he was running the Olympics in Utah, who said to Olympic athletes "you didn't get here on your own." Which is the same sentiment, of course.

Waiting and Waiting, c'mon, racewalking for gold??? Badmitton???

Now womens beach voleyball, that's the ticket!!

We beat the Chinese last night and the other US womens team beat the Brazillians.

Tonight it's nothin but fine, strong, US women going for the gold!!!