Griffith University business student Tiana Sogaard-Andersen has ended the World University Games in golden style as part of Australia’s triumphant women’s water polo team.
Having scored a crucial goal with just a minute to go to clinch a semi-final victory against Russia, Tiana scored twice in yesterday’s final as Australia defeated Canada 6-3. The game was decided by a penalty shootout after scores were locked 3-3 at full time.
The result means Australia finishes the 28th Summer Universiade, held in Gwangiu, Korea, with a record haul of 19 medals and in 15th place on the overall medal tally with four gold, three silver and twelve bronze.
Tiana is not the only Griffith representative bringing a medal back to Australia.
Fellow business student Matthew Denny overcame rain, pressure and a necessary change of footwear to win a silver medal in the discus.
The youngest athlete in the field, the 19-year-old former world youth champion was third after three rounds of the competition before throwing a personal best of 62.58m in the fourth round to secure his medal, setting an Australian under 20 record in the process.
A delighted Matthew told Uniroos News, the website that has been following the Australian team’s efforts in Korea, that a trip to Europe for some pre-Games competition had been advantageous. And he didn’t mind the rain.
“As soon as it started pouring rain I knew I had the upper hand because I know I can throw well in the rain no matter what,” he said.
“Everyone was having trouble at the start, even me, but I changed my shoes and got more grip.”
Exercise science student and swimmer Kiah Melverton completed the Griffith medal tally with two bronze medals from the women’s 800m and 1500m.
The 19-year-old told Uniroos News she was thrilled to come away with two medals at the senior international level.
Griffith University’s fourth representative on the Australian team, Serena Fraser, was eliminated in the first round of the 46kg taekwondo competition.
All four athletes are members of the Griffith Sports College and manager Mr Duncan Free was full of praise for their efforts.
“This has been a fantastic experience for our athletes in what is a major sporting event. Around 20,000 students from throughout the world have taken part and the Griffith contingent will take much from this competition,” he said.
For more about what the Griffith Sports College has to offer, visit the Sports Zone at the Griffith Gold Coast Open Day on July 26.