COLLEGE PARK, Md. (WDVM) – On Friday, July 23rd, residents of Prince George’s county joined a pep rally, hosted at the Junior Tennis Champions Center (JTCC), to celebrate three Olympians who are currently representing the DMV, with Team USA at the Tokyo Olympics.
“Greatness Grows Here” was the title given to the event, in celebration of Maryland natives Kevin Durant, Jerami Grant, and Francis Tiafoe; who are all competing in Japan right now.
Families, and kids got to participate in a healthy round of Olympic trivia, soaked in the atmosphere set by the weather, food, and music; and even got to hear a few words from a few key speakers.
Wanda Durant, Kevin Durant’s mother, featured as one of the key speakers of the event; along with Francis Tiafoe’s coach, Oliver Akli, former NFL star, and Super Bowl champion Kyle Arrington, CEO of the JTCC, Ray Benton, and more.
“When he found out, he was like ‘Man, I can’t believe it.'” said Oliver Akli, Francis’ former coach at JTCC, and Senior Director of Champions program at JTCC. “Because everyone was dreaming about this their whole lives. Even if you see [Novak] Djokovic, and those guys. He was telling me, he’s going to make sure at least Djokovic does not win a gold medal, so we’ll see how far he can go.”
“Well I’m gonna be cheering louder than anyone, he probably will be able to hear me.” said Wanda Durant, mother of Kevin Durant, “But, he knows that I’m going to be back home with the family, rooting him on. And expecting great things from him, and the team, so we’re expecting them to rally, do what they’ve always done, bring home the gold.”