After a year of incredible accomplishments, five men, five women and three teams have been nominated for Team USA Awards presented by Dow, Best of the Year Awards in the Olympic categories. Up for Female Olympic Athlete of the Year, presented by DICK’S Sporting Goods, are gymnast Simone Biles, wrestler Adeline Gray, triathlete Gwen Jorgensen, swimmer Katie Ledecky and tennis player Serena Williams. Up for Male Olympic Athlete of the Year are wrestler Jordan Burroughs, decathlete Ashton Eaton, shooter Vincent Hancock, alpine skier Ted Ligety and ice hockey player Auston Matthews. And up for Olympic Team of the Year, presented by Dow, are the Women’s USA-1 Bobsled Team, the Women’s World Cup Soccer Team and the Women’s Senior National Water Polo Team. Last week, we helped you get to know each nominee a little bit better. Now it’s time for you to put that knowledge to the test.
How well do you know the Best of the Year nominees? You’re about to find out. Answers are at the bottom, and remember, no cheating! When you’re finished, don’t forget to vote for your favorites by heading to TeamUSA.org/Awards.
1. Which athlete grew up in Arizona but competes in a winter sport?
2. Which female athlete competed on the boys’ varsity team at her high school?
3. Which team won its third world title this year?
4. Which athlete spends most of the year in Australia training with a group called the Wollongong Wizards?
5. Which athlete is married to a Canadian Olympian who competes in the same sport?
6. Which athlete won the 100th medal by an U.S. woman at her sport’s world championships?
7. Which athlete is the youngest of five sisters and was homeschooled so she could focus on her sport from a young age?
8. Which athlete rebounded from a third-place finish at his or her world championships in 2014 to capture his or her third world title this year?
9. Which team made history by becoming the first U.S. team to win the world championship in its sport?
10. Which athlete is a former member of the U.S. Army?
11. Which athlete was first introduced to his or her sport while on a daycare field trip when he or she was 6 years old?
12. Which athlete became the second-most decorated athlete in the world championship history of his/her sport this year?
13. Which team became the first to hold all major titles in its sport at once this year?
14. How many nominees won their third world title in 2015?
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1. Auston Matthews. Despite growing up in the desert of Scottsdale, Arizona, Matthews attended his first NHL game as a toddler and was out on the ice himself shortly after his sixth birthday. Click here to vote for Matthews.
2. Adeline Gray. As her school didn’t have a girls’ wrestling team, Gray had to try out for the boys’ wrestling team and shocked everyone when she made varsity. Click here to vote for Gray.
3. Women’s soccer. Despite winning four out of five Olympic gold medals, World Cup titles proved more difficult to come by for the women’s soccer team. But in 2015 the U.S. women won their first world title since 1999, beating defending champion Japan 5-2 in the final. Click here to vote for the Women’s World Cup Team.
4. Gwen Jorgensen. Jorgensen began training with head coach Jamie Turner after the London 2012 Olympic Games. He coaches in Australia, and his group of athletes is dubbed the Wollongong Wizards. Click here to vote for Jorgensen.
5. Ashton Eaton. The world-record holder in the decathlon, Eaton is married to Brianne Thiesen-Eaton, who competes for Canada in the heptathlon. Click here to vote for Eaton.
6. Katie Ledecky. Ledecky won five gold medals at the 2015 FINA World Championships, but before the event was half over, she won gold medal No. 100 for American women. Click here to vote for Ledecky.
7. Serena Williams. Known for being the younger sister of fellow Olympic tennis champion Venus Williams, the two were both homeschooled and coached by their father from a very young age. Click here to vote for Williams.
8. Jordan Burroughs. At the 2014 world championships, Burroughs sprained his MCL in his first-round match and was defeated in the semifinals before rebounding to win bronze. In 2015 he was back to his winning ways, going 6-0 and outscoring his opponents 45-5. Click here to vote for Burroughs.
9. Women’s bobsled. When Elana Meyers Taylor and Cherrelle Garrett won the world championship, it was the first U.S. world title ever in women’s bobsled. Click here to vote for the Women’s USA-1 Bobsled Team.
10. Vincent Hancock. The skeet shooter was part of the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit from 2006-12, earning the National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon and Distinguished International Shooter Badge, among others. Click here to vote for Hancock.
11. Simone Biles. Biles began copying other gymnasts practicing at the gym, which caught the eye of one of the coaches, who sent a letter home to her parents. Biles soon began taking recreational classes, and the rest is history for the 14-time world medalist. Click here to vote for Biles.
12. Ted Ligety. Ligety earned his third world title in giant slalom and bronze in super combined, bringing his world championship medal total up to seven – more than any other U.S. alpine skier – and second to freestyle skier Hannah Kearney. Click here to vote for Ligety.
13. Women’s water polo. After an unprecedented streak of dominance, the women’s water polo team holds the Olympic, world championship, World Cup and World League titles. Click here to vote for the Women’s Senior National Team.
14. Seven: Simone Biles (both in the individual all-around and on floor exercise), Jordan Burroughs (74 kg.), Adeline Gray (two at 75 kg., one at 67 kg.), Vincent Hancock (skeet), Ted Ligety (giant slalom), Auston Matthews (once for the U17 team and twice for U18) and the women's soccer team.