Olympian Alex Rose falls short of qualifying in Rio


WEST BRANCH — Pursuing a dream is often a difficult challenge. It is even more difficult when the world pushes against you.

Ogemaw Heights High School and Central Michigan University graduate Alex Rose fell short of the qualifying distance and finished 13th place out of 17 athletes in the first group of discus competitors to throw and 29th out of 35 overall at the Olympics Aug. 12.

Athletes either had to throw a distance of 65.5 meters or finish in the top 12 to continue on to the competitions Saturday, Aug. 13.

With temperatures in the low 60s and light rain showers, before stepping into the ring athletes were drying off discs, shoes and the ground, hoping Mother Nature wouldn’t hinder their chances of moving on.

Rose has been competing in track and field since his freshman year at OHHS, with the exception of a few years’ hiatus due to injury.

While a junior at OHHS, he took fourth in shot put at states and set the school record. During his senior year Rose won the state title in shot put and was runner-up in discus. He also earned three letters in football, two in basketball and two in track.

After graduating in 2009, Rose continued competing in track and field at Central Michigan University.

Rose is a U.S. citizen, also holding citizenship in Samoa, the country of origin for his father, who immigrated to the U.S. when Rose was in his late teens. Rose was competing for Samoa in the Olympics.

In April, the Herald spoke with Rose, who was hopeful of maintaining his top-30 international ranking in discus; however, on May 15 in Clairmont, Calif., he threw an immediately qualifying discus distance of 65.74 meters. The throw was a new personal best for Rose and locked in his trip to the Olympics.

Unfortunately, Rose said he strained his adductor muscle — a small muscle group near his groin, so he has spent the last month rehabilitating.

“I am confident that I will be near 100 percent by the time I throw on the 12th,” he said in a previous interview.

Despite not moving on in the competition, Rose proudly represents his hometown of West Branch and the island nation of Samoa, showing that through hard work and dedication anything is possible.

Following the competition Alex had this to say on his Facebook:


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Dave Goldeb

Alex, what an honor to be at the Olymics! You represented your dad's country, Samoa, and your hometown, West Branch, so very well. You did everyone proud! Can't wait to watch you in 4 years!!

Friday, August 12, 2016 | Report this
Tricia Dishaw

We are so proud of you !!!!!!! Congratulations !!!!!

Sunday, August 14, 2016 | Report this

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