AAU Shines in Spain
Alicante, Spain - On the heels of a dominating showing in Germany last year, the AAU Taekwondo Team (led by Head Coach Greg Tubbs) solidified its standing as USA’s top grass-roots taekwondo program by outperforming the competition in multiple divisions. The Spanish Open (G1) welcomed its sparring competitors on Saturday March 25, hosting cadets and juniors. Team AAU/USA racked up medals early for day one of competition, while earning an overall cadet third place — three gold and three bronze medals.
Junior team members would keep the momentum, and then some, moving forward with five gold medals and two silver, to capture an impressive overall junior second place finish, rounding out day one of sparring competition in spectacular fashion.
AAU senior team members marveled onlookers on Sunday March 26, the last day of competition, with upsets over foreign national team members and Olympians. With two gold medals and one bronze, Team AAU/USA showed depth of its taekwondo program from top to bottom. Senior team members rallied to earn an overall senior third place finish.
While medals are important for team success, Team AAU represented USA well with its strong camaraderie and support for each and every athlete while competing abroad. It was a wave of bright blue warm-up jackets donned with “AAU/USA" and loud cheering that would shadow every athlete to their respective ring. The support from not only the head coach, but national and regional coaches as well, proved to be one of many reasons why Team AAU/USA continues to succeed all across the world.
Mike Friello, AAU Taekwondo Director, continues to build an impressive resume for Team AAU/USA, as he provides challenging opportunities for U.S. taekwondo athletes, making the Olympic Games more than just a dream.