The 2016 Summer Olympics get under way in Rio with the Opening Ceremonies on Friday night, and three UCF Knights will be competing for their countries.
Aline Reis - Women's Soccer (GK, Brazil)
A native of Campinas, Brazil, Aline Reis joined UCF in 2007, and over her four years, cemented herself as arguably UCF's greatest keeper. Now she's getting a chance to prove herself for her native Brazil in her home country on the world stage.
Reis followed Amanda Cromwell to UCLA after she left UCF, and still serves on Cromwell's staff as a volunteer goalkeeper coach. She participated in several camps for the Brazilian National Team, but finally broke through to the national team earlier this month.
At UCF, Reis was named All-Conference USA each of her four years, and picked up All-America honors as a sophomore. She's still second all-time at UCF in saves and fourth all-time in clean sheets, despite standing 5' 3".
Brazil is, of course, a medal favorite once again. They play their first match against China Wednesday, August 3rd at 3 p.m. Eastern. It's the first of three group-stage matches (Brazil also plays South Africa and Sweden) before the medal round. You can follow Brazil's progress here.
Ricardo Gouveia - Golf (Portugal)
Ricardo Gouveia will be making Olympic history by taking part in the first Olympic Golf event in 112 years when he tees off for his native Portugal in Rio.
Gouveia, who played at UCF from 2011-2014, is now on the European Challenge Tour, and ranks #127 in the Official World Golf Rankings. he has three professional wins to his credit.
At UCF, Gouveia medaled three times and tallied 19 top-10 finishes. He was all-AAC and All-Southeast region as a senior in 2014.
The Olympic Golf Tournament will be played August 11-14, and consists of four rounds, just like every other golf tournament you're used to seeing.
Phil Dalhausser - Men's Beach Volleyball (USA)
Although Phil Dalhausser didn't actually suit up for UCF in NCAA play (UCF doesn't have Men's Volleyball), the 6'9" veteran beach player will be making his third trip to the Games this year.
Dalhausser graduated from UCF in 2002, finishing his business degree while playing in his spare time on campus. Upon graduation, he caught the bug, and moved up to Myrtle Beach to begin a run at the AVP Tour.
By 2004, he had made it, and in Beijing in 2008, Dalhausser won gold alongside his teammate, Todd Rogers.
The Mainland High School product failed to medal in 2012 in London, but at the age of 36, he's back for one more shot at Olympic gold with his old friend Nick Lucerna, with whom he started his AVP journey a decade and a half ago.
Check out this excellent interview with the Orlando Sentinel for more details on Phil's career.
Dalhausser and Lucerna kick off their Olympic run on August 7th at 4:30 p.m. Eastern. You can follow the schedule here.
Follow-up: Jackie Coward made it all the way to the finals of the U.S. Olympic Trials in the Women's 100 meter hurdles, but came up short in her bid for Rio: We thank Jackie once again for her generosity and congratulate her on a fantastic run to the finals.