With the Olympic Games swinging into gear this week, watching the festivities might take a little creativity due to the time zone differences between Tokyo and Cincinnati.
But if you’re a die-hard soccer fan, getting up at sunrise shouldn’t be a problem, especially when it comes to cheering on Cincinnati native and global soccer star Rose Lavelle as she competes in her first Olympics.
Bars around Cincinnati surely will show soccer and other Olympic sports on their flatscreens, but perhaps the most exciting opportunity to watch Lavelle will happen this Saturday, when her family will pack into MVP Sports Bar & Grille (6923 Plainfield Road, Silverton).
The event, which is open to the public, starts early — July 24 at 7:30 a.m Eastern (in Tokyo, the game will be played live at 8 p.m.) — and will feature the U.S. women’s soccer team’s match against New Zealand. The Lavelle family will be on hand to meet fans and chat about Cincinnati's favorite soccer star.
Yuengling beer, for which Lavelle is a brand ambassador, is partnering with the family for the event, which will feature food and drink specials. Interested in meeting Lavelle herself? Fans at the party can enter a sweepstakes to meet our hometown soccer star.
Some fans started celebrating even earlier. Wednesday morning, Mount Notre Dame High School (MND) students cheered for Lavelle, an alumna, during a sleep-in viewing party of the United States' match against Sweden (Sweden won 3-0, handing Team USA its first loss since January 2019).
After a career at the University of Wisconsin, Lavelle became the No. 1 draft pick in the 2017 National Women’s Soccer League, playing for the Boston Breakers. Lavelle, a midfielder for the U.S. Women’s National Team (USWNT) and a Cincinnati native, was named MVP during the 2021 SheBelieves Cup’s winning match earlier this year.
She also was vital to the USWNT’s exuberant World Cup victory in 2019. Lavelle started all six games and scored three goals, including one in the finals against the Netherlands.
Vlatko Andonovski, head coach for the USWNT, announced the Olympics roster in June. Lavelle joins breakout stars Megan Rapinoe, Becky Sauerbrunn and Carli Lloyd.
If the U.S. women's soccer team wins the Olympic gold medal, they will become the first team — female or male — to win both the World Cup and Olympics in a single cycle, the Los Angeles Times reports. The gold medal match is scheduled for Aug. 5.
Though the Tokyo Olympics are happening this year, they're still considered to be the 2020 Olympic Games due to the coronavirus pandemic delay.
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