12 Columbians to Watch at the Tokyo Olympics

Jul. 20, 2021
YASMEEN AL-DABBAGH
Courtesy of Yasmeen Al-Dabbagh

Yasmeen Al-Dabbagh 19CC, track and field

Considered the “fastest woman in Saudi Arabia,” sprinter Yasmeen Al-Dabbagh '19CC, a former member of the Columbia Lions track and field team, will represent her home country in the 100-meter race.    

 

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Columbia University Athletics

Charlotte Buck ’18CC, rowing

Charlotte Buck of Nyack, New York, is a former team captain and MVP of the Columbia women’s rowing team. Catch her in the Team USA women’s eight boat.

 

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Jacob Buczek, third from left. (Columbia University Athletics)

Jakub Buczek ’16CC, lightweight rowing

Ontario-born Jakub Buczek will represent Team Canada at the Tokyo Olympics. A former member of the Columbia men’s rowing team, Buczek has raced in several international competitions since graduating.

 

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Courtesy of Isadora Cerullo

Isadora Cerullo 13CC, rugby

The Tokyo games mark Isadora Cerullo’s second Olympic appearance after competing in Rio de Janeiro in 2016. (She made headlines that year for accepting an on-field marriage proposal.) Originally from Raleigh, North Carolina, Cerullo is playing with Team Brazil. 

 

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Jackie Dubrovich, left. (Columbia University Athletics)

Jackie Dubrovich ’16CC, fencing

Jackie Dubrovich, who grew up in Riverdale, New Jersey, started fencing at age eight. She is currently ranked second in women’s foil in the US.

 

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Columbia University Athletics

Nadia Eke ’15CC, track and field

Ghanaian jumper Nadia Eke earned numerous titles for her epic triple leaps of more than thirteen meters while on the Columbia Lions track and field team. Already a medalist at several African championships, this summer she will represent Ghana in the Olympic triple jump event and will serve as the nation's flag bearer at the opening ceremony. 

 

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Belish / Shutterstock

Evita Griskenas, rising Columbia College sophomore, rhythmic gymnastics

Chicagoan Evita Griskenas will represent Team USA in the rhythmic gymnastics competition. A medalist at several US national championships, Griskenas was the most awarded athlete in any sport at the 2019 Pan American Games, earning four golds and one bronze.

 

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Jake Hoyle, center. (Columbia University Athletics)

Jake Hoyle ’16CC, fencing

Ranked the number-one male épée fencer in the US, Philadelphian Jake Hoyle, a two-time NCAA champion and the gold-medal winner at the 2019 USA Fencing National Championships, will compete as a member of Team USA.

 

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Columbia University Athletics

Maodo Lô ’16CC, basketball

German basketball player Maodo Lô will compete with Team Germany this summer. During his time at Columbia, Lô was a major player on the men’s basketball team and became the University’s all-time leader in three-pointers and steals.

 

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Columbia University Athletics

Robb Paller ’16CC, baseball

Raised in Brooklyn, Robb Paller grew up playing baseball and served as the captain of his high-school team. This summer, the former Lions star outfielder and winner of two All-Ivy awards is competing with the Israeli national baseball team.

 

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Columbia University Athletics

Nicole Ross ’13CC, fencing

Native New Yorker Nicole Ross, who is currently ranked third in the US in women’s foil fencing, makes her second Olympic appearance after competing in the 2012 London games. During her time at Columbia, Ross was named a 2010 NCAA champion, and since graduating she has helped lead the US women’s foil team to victory at several world championships.

 

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Tanguay, second from left. (Columbia University Athletics)

John Tanguay ’20CC, Paralympic rowing

A former member of the Columbia heavyweight rowing team, John Tanguay, who was born with bilateral clubfoot, will compete in the Tokyo Paralympic Games later this summer. Originally from Pennington, New Jersey, Tanguay was a member of the USRowing boat that won silver at the 2019 World Rowing Championships.