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Chase Kalisz, Georgia Bulldogs Legend, Wins Team USA’s First Gold Medal
Screenshot from YouTube (left), Screenshot from Twitter (right)

Athletes train their entire lives for the Olympics.

Qualifying for the Olympic trials is one thing. Making the team is another. Winning a medal? That elevates you to a whole other level.

Swimmer Chase Kalisz reached that level and then some by taking home the first gold medal for Team USA of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Chase Kalisz Wins First Gold Medal for Team USA

RELATED: Former Georgia Swimmer Chase Kalisz Eyes Gold at Tokyo Olympics

This is the first time in over 20 years Michael Phelps hasn’t been in the pool for the Americans. Having the five-time Olympian on the team was as good as gold.

In the first post-Phelps Olympic games, the odds are still favorable to win it all, but not locked in. Kalisz, a University of Georgia alum, put the doubts to rest when he took home the gold medal in the men’s 400-meter individual medley.

My swimming knowledge deteriorates every four years, so a refresher on the medley format was much needed

It goes butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke and freestyle.

Kalisz is in or near the lead during the butterfly and backstroke. He pulled away from the rest of the field during the breaststroke leg.

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Fellow UGA alum and U.S. teammate Jay Litherland moved like a torpedo in the freestyle leg to capture the silver medal over Australia’s Brendan Smith.

Kalisz added the first Olympic gold to Team USA’s medal count and made Phelps, who was commentating on the race for NBC, smile. Kalisz and Phelps are former training partners and hail from Maryland. Phelps’ protege captured not only the first U.S. gold, but also his first personal Olympic gold. He was the silver medalist in the same event at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio De Janeiro.

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Katie Ledecky, Ryan Lochte and Phelps have cemented themselves as mainstay Olympic athletes. Watch out for Chase Kalisz as the next star of U.S. swimming. This gold could be the first of many.

MORE: Michael Phelps Married a Miss USA Contestant & Had 3 Kids

Joe Grobeck About the author:
Joe is a graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and lives in Austin, Texas. He believes Ndaumkong Suh should've won the 2009 Heisman and is an avid basketball fan.
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