FGCU volleyball star teams up with Walsh Jennings for 2020 Olympics
A former FGCU athlete will get the chance at a lifetime dream when she teams up with with beach volleyball’s most decorated player in history for a shot at gold.
FGCU’s Brooke Sweat is teamed up with Kerri Walsh Jennings for USA beach volleyball competing together to qualify for the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan.
“Years ago, when I was at FGCU, Kerri and Misty [May-Treanor] came and played a little showcase,” Sweat said. “Just being in awe of them now to be the same side of the net with Kerri.”
Sweat said it almost didn’t happen after she went through shoulder surgery this year. It had her considering tossing in the towel at 32 years old.
“Coming back from surgery, I just didn’t know if I was gonna keep playing or what,” Sweat said. “But then I talked to Kerri, and it was just knowing in my heart I wasn’t finished yet. I wanted to keep going.”
Walsh Jennings expressed full confidence in her new teammates ability to compete.
“Brooke just came back from shoulder surgery, and she’s a champion,” Walsh Jennings said. “She’s working really hard. We’re kind of like this: We’re new in the dating scene together, and we’re learning each other, and the world is very good at beach volleyball.”
The three-time Olympic gold medalist knows qualifying for Tokyo 2020 won’t be easy, but she’s confident in Sweat’s defense and dedication.
“I believe without a doubt that Brooke and I can and will be the number one team in the world,” Walsh Jennings said.
Southwest Florida is ready to follow the Canterbury School’s success story.
“I just receive so many messages all the time from people down here, people I don’t know just saying that the Florida crew is cheering me on and so proud of me,” Sweat said. “I just feel so blessed to have this community supporting me and watching me and cheering me on.”