Imagine that in middle school Kiyoko was a sporting legend. She excelled at track and field, especially in sprints, pole vault and the hurdles, and she also played basketball, baseball and field hockey on the side. However, she suffered an injury to her leg before entering high school and had to give up her athletic life. Her friend Yui saw how she felt about this, and dropped hints about the boys volleyball team needing a manager. Kiyoko joined out of curiosity and she hasn’t looked back.

Chanda Gunn, seen here celebrating a win at the 2006 Winter Olympics in Torino, won a bronze medal with the team after a 4-0 victory over Finland.

Gunn, who has epilepsy, started her college career with University of Wisconsin.  Unfortunately, her freshman year, she had to miss school and ice time due to grand mal seizures.  Gunn, who had not disclosed her epilepsy to the school, spent almost a year in the hospital getting the seizures under control.  Once her medications were adjusted, Wisconsin had moved on, and she had a hard time finding a school to play for.

Gunn joined Northeastern’s program as a walk on and worked her way up to a starting position with a scholarship setting several records along the way.  In her junior season (2002-2003), Gunn put up a 1.37 GAA, good for second in the country, and led the nation with a .950 SV%.  In her senior season (2003-2004), Gunn again led the nation with a .938 SV%, posted a 2.06 GAA, and was named Hockey East Player of the Year. She was a three time Patty Kazmaier award finalist and won the Hockey Humanitarian award in 2004.

In addition to her Olympic bronze medal, Gunn has also won gold (2005) and silver (2007) medals with Team USA at IIHF Women’s World Championships.

Photo credit: USA Hockey