Olympic RoundUp: Gibb's Gets Another Chance, Urtez Shows Out

With the Olympics just beginning, there's already been some good news and bad news for former Utah stars. While two athletes may have had their Olympics aspirations end prior to ever starting, one former Ute is lighting it up on the diamond
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Once a Ute, always a Ute.

The 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo may just be two days into official competition, but that doesn't mean that it's been all good news for former Utah athletes.

Here's a quick recap from previous days news...

Jake Gibb, Beach Volleyball, USA:
One of the more accomplished Utah-associated athletes ever for the Summer Games, Gibb was all set to appear in his fourth Olympics.

Gibb has a good amount of success at the previous games, getting bounced in the quarterfinals in 2008 before a fifth place finish in 2012. He then switched partners ahead of the 2016 Olympics, which resulted in a not-the-best finish. 

Now partnered with Taylor Crabb, the duo was set to take Tokyo by storm as they were considered legitimate medal candidates. But that may no longer be the case.

According to a report by NBC4 News in Los Angeles, Crabb has tested positive for COVID-19 and will no longer be competing in the Olympics. According to the report, Crabb's brother confirmed the positive test but insisted that his brother was feeling fine still.

With Crabb out, it means that Gibb's participation is now up in the air. According to other reports and confirmed by Sports Illustrated, USA Volleyball has found Tri Bourne to replace Crabb.

Schedule:

  • Gibb/Bourne DEFEATS Carambula/Rossi (Italy) 2-0 
  • Gibb/TBD vs. Heidrich/Gerson (Switzerland), Tuesday, July 27 — 6 p.m. MST
  • Gibb/TBD vs. Cherif/Ahmed (QAT), Friday, July 30 — 7 a.m. MST

Anissa Urtez, Softball, Mexico:
Urtez started off her Olympic games with a bang — literally. 

She became the first member of the Mexican national team to hit a homerun in the Olympics, adding another run-scoring single in Mexico's 3-2 loss to host Japan.

Urtez starred for the Utes from 2014-16, really evolving as a player as her batting averaged went from .270 as a sophomore to .410 her senior season.

Schedule:

  • Mexico 0 — Canada 4 / Wednesday, July 21 
  • Mexico 2 — Japan 3 / Wednesday, July 21 
  • Mexico 0 — USA 2 / Friday, July 23 
  • Mexico vs. Italy, Sunday, July 25 — 5 a.m. MST
  • Mexico vs. Australia, Monday, July 26 — 5 a.m. MST

Kara Eaker, Gymnastics, USA: 
It appears that Kara Eaker's Olympic experience is over before it ever really got started.

According to reports by Sports Illustrated, Eaker is one of two US Gymnasts, along with fellow alternate Leanna Wong, to test positive for COVID-19.

They have both been placed in isolation.

U.S. officials said the test took place when the team was training just outside Tokyo in Inzai City. Team members arrived last week for the camp to great fanfare at Narita airport.

“The health and safety of our athletes, coaches and staff is our top priority. We can confirm that an alternate on the women’s artistic gymnastics team tested positive for COVID-19,” the USOPC statement said. “In alignment with local rules and protocols, the athlete has been transferred to a hotel to quarantine. Out of respect for the individual’s privacy, we cannot provide more information at this time.”

Eaker will now go through an isolation period of 8-14 days, all depending on her symptoms and overall health. Already vaccinated, Eaker's father said that she is in good spirits, doing fine and experiencing no symptoms.

The future Red Rock began her isolation/quarantine on Sunday, which means that her 2020 Olympics aren't officially over yet.

If her quarantine is on the shorter side, she could still return to the competition for the event finals — if needed. If her quarantine takes the full 14 days, she will be unable to compete even if called upon. 

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