Athlete Anastaija Zolotic Makes History With Gold Medal Win in Taekwondo

A Florida teen made American Olympic history on Sunday, July 25, when she took the gold medal in Taekwondo. She is the first female athlete From the U.S. to achieve this goal.

Anastasija Zolotic celebrated her historic Olympic win for the featherweight division title, beating Russian athlete Tatiana Minina 25-17.

At only 18 years old, Zolotic has fulfilled her lifelong dream to not only compete in the Olympics but to win.

“My 8-year-old self was running around the schoolyard saying I was going to be Olympic champion, but she could never have imagined what this moment is like,” said Zolotic. “It’s unbelievable. It really hasn’t sunk in yet.”

She’d been foretelling her future, explaining to friends and family that she would only need one trip to the Olympics to become a champion.

That’s precisely what happened.

“Isn’t that amazing? I’m just glad I can do something to raise its profile in the U.S.,” she said. “I just want the country to be proud of me, to share this flood of emotions.”

The first two rounds were high scoring, but it was in the third round that Zolotic excelled and won the match.

She’s only the fourth American to reach the Olympic finals in Taekwondo and the second woman.

The last American to win a gold medal in the sport was Steve Lopez, who took home the Olympic win in 2004.


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