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Rio 2016 Olympic Calympian: Roser Tarrago, Women's water polo, Spain

The 2nd time Spanish Olympian and current Cal student will be looking to add to her Silver medal from the 2012 London games.

Roser "Ru" Tarrago will be a 2nd time Olympian in Rio. Before she came to Cal, she won a Silver with Spain in the 2012 London games.
Roser "Ru" Tarrago will be a 2nd time Olympian in Rio. Before she came to Cal, she won a Silver with Spain in the 2012 London games.
Clive Rose/Getty Images

Roser "Ru" Tarrago

Sport: Women's Water Polo

Country: Spain

Twitter: @rutarrago

Birthday: March 25th, 1993 (age 23)

Hometown: Barcelona, Spain

Cal affiliation: current California Golden Bears student (taking the last year off to help Spain qualify for Rio)

Years at Cal: 2013 - current

Olympic appearances: 2012 London (Silver medal with Spain), 2016 Rio

Cal Achievements:

Despite entering Cal with Olympian experience (and a medal too), Roser "Ru" Tarrago actually felt that the Cal practices are much tougher on a consistent basis than on the Spanish national team. Ru joined the Golden Bears in the same year as Hungarian Calympian Dora Antal, who was named the MPSF Newcomer of the Year. Tarrago's prolific goal scoring was enough to get her on the All-MPSF Newcomer team to join her teammate.

Ru scored 49 goals as a freshman for the Golden Bears, 2nd on the team behind Antal. She was again the team's leading scorer behind Antal in her sophomore season.

In both 2014 and 2015, the Golden Bears lost in the NCAA semifinals.

International Achievements:

With the Spanish national team, Ru has achieved the following results (from her Spanish wiki page):

  • Ranked 6th in the European Championships in Zagreb 2010
  • Classified 5th in the European Championships in Eindhoven 2012
  • Champion Kirishi Cup 2012
  • Olympic Qualifying Tournament champion Trieste 2012
  • Silver medal at the 2012 Summer Olympics
  • 5th classified in the Superfinal of the FINA Water Polo World League 2013
  • Gold medal at the World Championships in Barcelona 2013
  • 5th classified in the Superfinal of the FINA Water Polo World League 2014
  • Gold medal at the European Championships in Budapest 2014
  • Bronze medal at the World Cup Waterpolo FINA 2014
  • Ranked 7th in the World Championship Kazan 2015
  • Ranked 4th in the European Championships Belgrade 2016
  • Silver medal in the Superfinal of the FINA Water Polo World League 2016

More on Ru and her Rio Outlook:

A prolific scorer, Roser Tarrago plays the driver position - one who catches the ball and then "drive" toward the net to score goals. That's actually the same position as played by Dora Antal, the top scorer for the Golden Bears during the same period as Tarrago. The Catalan native is FC Barcelona fan, based on her Twitter (no surprise there).

Like her fellow Calmypian Golden Bears, Dora Antal and Anna Illes of Hungary, who are also going to Rio, Ru took a sabbatical year in this past year to help her national team qualify for the Rio games. Ru played for the Spanish club team CN Mataro for the year and won the Copa de la Reina and LEN Trophy.

Ru was not one of the top two scorers for the Spanish national team in 2012, but she will play a much bigger role, at least goal scoring-wise, for that team in Rio. She was named the Best Scorer of the tournament after Spain's Silver medal from the recent FINA World League Super Final; Spain lost 13-9 to U.S.A. in the final. I believe the US National team (with a ton of Stanford Cardinal) may again be the favorite for the Gold. Ru's Spain and Antal and Illes's Hungary will be vying for those other two medals.

Spain is in the same group as Hungary, United States, and China. Their round robin matches will be just for seeding purposes since all 8 teams at the Olympic will play in the knockout stage.

Good luck to Ru in Rio and GO BEARS!