From Old Lyme to New London, dozens of fans rooted on three Connecticut Olympians at two watch parties on Thursday.
“We are all really excited to be here,” said Haley Stevens of Old Lyme.
Eyes were glued to the screens broadcasting the men’s eight rowing final at an event put on by the Old Lyme Rowing Association.
Among the Team USA members rowing for Gold were Austin Hack and Liam Corrigan, who both grew up in this Shoreline town.
“They were almost the exact same person in high school. They were both extremely smart kids which helped them be great athletes,” said Louis Zubek, former Lyme-Old Lyme High boys varsity crew coach.
In New London, family and friends headed to the Garde Arts Center to support India Pagan.
“The community is always there for her but being able to be here together and enjoy this moment together this is amazing for me,” said Carmen Pagan, mother of India Pagan.
She’s part of Puerto Rico’s first women’s basketball team to ever qualify for the Olympics and on Thursday they took on Belgium.
“I really wish I could be there. Just knowing that fans aren’t allowed really crushed my soul because I’m always screaming for this girl,” said Taina Pagan, sister of India Pagan.
“Super, super proud of this young lady and what’s she’s accomplished. It’s been a long journey,” said Moises Pagan, father of India Pagan.
And while there was a 4th place finish for the U.S. rowers, the pair from Old Lyme serve as role models for others back in their hometown.
“It is absolutely inspirational. Our coach as well has a very decorated past. So just learning from and being a part of a program like this is just amazing and I know very motivating for myself,” said Stevens.
Hack also just missed medaling in the Rio Olympics in 2016. This was the first Olympics for Corrigan.