Newman University alumnus Florian Skilang Temengil is headed to the Olympic Games for the second time. Temengil graduated from Newman in 2009 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Sonography. While at Newman, Temengil competed in heavyweight freestyle wrestling and helped the Newman Wrestling Team secure a second-place national finish in 2008.
Temengil’s first trip to the Olympics was also in 2008 where he represented his country of Palau in the Beijing Summer Games, ranking 16th overall.
The announcement for Temengil's particiption in this year's Olympic Games came in a notice from United World Wrestling (UWW) on May 16, 2016 that “Temengil, based on his efforts during the qualification tournaments, is allocated one quota to compete in the Rio Olympic Games.”
Temengil competed in many Olympic qualification tournaments during the past year. In April 2016, he brought home a bronze medal from the Africa Oceania Olympic Qualifier held in Algeria. Shortly before that, in March, he won a gold medal at the 2016 Oceania Championships held in Hamilton, New Zealand.
Newman University Head Wrestling Coach Ryan Smith recently reconnected with Temengil during a summer wrestling camp held on campus.
“He showed the kids some technique, told his story a bit and fueled their ambitions for their own success,” said Smith. “What he’s doing is fantastic. What an incredible journey he’s had, representing his home country not only in 2008 but again in 2016. We’re excited for him and we’re going to support him in any way we can.”