The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

The student voice of Washington State University since 1895

The Daily Evergreen

Coug Olympians: Lisa Roman

Former WSU rower took gold with Team Canada in Tokyo
Lisa Roman raising ‘ol Crimson Sept. 24 2022 at Gesa Field. Courtesy WSU Athletics

There are just over 100 days until the 2024 Summer Olympics officially kick off in Paris. 

Several current WSU student-athletes will have their sights set on the chance to compete at the Olympic level with the upcoming swimming and track and field qualifiers. They are not the first Cougs – nor will they be the last – with Olympic dreams. Across the decades, over 50 athletes who once donned crimson and gray have made an appearance in the games – a handful of whom took home gold.

Former WSU rower Lisa Roman etched her name into history in the summer of 2021. She is the most recent Coug to become an Olympic medalist, taking gold for Team Canada in the women’s eight. This victory marked the first victory for Canada in over 30 years, having won its last gold medal in the Barcelona games of ‘92.

Having rowed with the Canadian National Team since 2014, Tokyo was not Roman’s first Olympic rodeo. She also held a spot in the women’s eight in the summer of 2016 in Rio. Team Canada took fifth that year, with the United States, the United Kingdom and Romania taking home medals.

In the 2020 games, however, Team Canada managed and held an early lead. The team finished their 2000-meter pursuit of gold at a mark of 5:59:13, 0.91 of a second over runner-up New Zealand.

Hailing from Langley, B.C., Roman arrived at WSU as a sophomore in the spring of 2010 and spent three seasons in the Coug’s varsity boat. 

Following her arrival at the Palouse, her “immediate impact” was felt on the women’s rowing program. After missing the mark in 2009, the Cougs qualified for the 2010 NCAA Championships and finished 13th. 

Roman transferred to WSU from University of Fraser Valley, where she began rowing for the first time.

Roman was named All-Pac-12 honoree in 2011 and 2012. While with the Cougs, she was made the Canadian U23 team and won gold in the 2011 U23 World Championships. 

Lisa Roman and Team Canada. Courtesy WSU Athletics

Following the win in Tokyo, Roman returned to school in pursuit of a master’s degree in counseling. She holds a bachelor of science in psychology with minors in human development and sports management from WSU, she said to the Surrey Now-Leader in 2021.

Roman was inducted into the WSU Hall of Fame in 2019.

More to Discover
About the Contributor
KEDZIE MOE, Editor-in-chief
Kedzie is the editor-in-chief of The Daily Evergreen for the summer and fall of 2024. She began working at the Evergreen as a sportswriter in the fall of '23 and took on the additional role of copy editor in the spring of '24. She is a junior public relations major from Seattle, Washington.