A girls’ soccer team joined the boys’ league and won the regional championship

  • Perhaps it’s time to rethink gender segregation in sports.
  • After realizing a single girls’ team was consistently dominating their league, Sergio González, president of amateur soccer club AEM Lleida in Spain, decided to register the team for the boys’ league in 2014.
  • And in 2017, they beat out 13 boys’ teams to claim the junior regional league championship. Read more (5/12/17)

On July 15th 1984, Kari Swenson, a highly successful US Biathlete, was abducted by father-and-son pair Don and Dan Nichols. The Nichols’ were survivalists who had planned to make Swenson the son’s bride in order to start a cult in the mountains.

After Kari failed to return home, a search party was sent out to look for her. Dozens of locals, along with family and friends spent hours combing through the woods of Big Sky, Montana, where they knew Kari had been cross-country training earlier in the day. Eventually a member of the party, Alan Goldstein, a friend of Swenson’s, stumbled onto the Nichols’ camp and was fatally shot by Don. In a state of panic, Dan Nichols slipped and his gun accidentally fired, shooting Kari in the abdomen. She miraculously survived. The duo fled, leaving Swenson chained to a tree. She sat alone with her dead friend for over four hours until she was found by rescuers.

Her surviving such a horrific injury is certainly amazing, but even more so is the fact that she went on to compete in the Women’s Biathlon World Championships in Chamonix, France. Despite having only 80% lung capacity, Swenson led the U.S. Team to win a bronze medal. Nowadays, Keri works as a veterinarian in Bozeman, Montana.

Maryland’s high school athletes can now wear their hijabs during sports tournaments

  • Under the new policy, high school athletes are allowed to wear their religious head coverings as long as it’s not “abrasive, hard or dangerous to any player/others.” The former policy required students to provide “documented evidence” to wear religious garments during sport tournaments. Read more. (4/4/2017 4:01 PM)

Tegla Loroupe (b. 1973) is a long-distance runner from Kenya. She has been the World Half-marathon champion three times, and held the world marathon record, as well as the records for 20, 25, and 30 kilometres.

She has won several important marathons, such as the New York, London, and Berlin ones. Additionally, she is a devoted advocate for women’s rights and education, establishing a school and an orphanage in her native Kenya. She founded the Tegla Loroupe Peace Foundation, promoting world peace through sports and cooperation.

Ondina Valla (1916-2006) was the first Italian woman to win an Olympic gold medal. She achieved this in 1936, after winning the 80 m hurdles event at the Berlin Summer Olympics, where she also established a new world record.

She was considered one of the top athletes in Italy even at the young age of 13, and became the national champion only a year later. She won the Italian Athletics Championships sixteen times throughout her career, in various events.