Marti Malloy, the San Jose State grad from Oak Harbor, Wash., is now a bronze medal Olympian.
But it wasn't easy.
The judo competitor upset the No. 2 ranked Telma Monteiro of Portugal in the morning, was handed a disappointing and resounding loss to Corina Caprioriu of Romania, then just 90 minutes later battled back her emotions and captured the bronze in the 57 kg weight category. She did that Monday with the judo equivalent of a knockout called an ippon, David Wharton of the Los Angeles Times wrote.
"Malloy seems in tears. From crushing defeat to bronze triumph in less than 90 minutes," San Jose Mercury News columnist Mark Purdy tweeted from matside.
She's just the second woman from the U.S. with that honor after Ronda Rousey did it four years ago.
She saw her coach, 92-year-old Yosh Uchida, the legendary judo coach at San Jose State up in the stands, beaming for her.
"And when I looked up, I saw Yosh up in the seats, so happy. I think I started crying," Malloy told Purdy. "He has been my No. 1 supporter."
Uchida once was the USA Olympic coach and helped write the international judo rule book back in 1964. Uchida's and colleagues' early work codifying the standards and weight classes helped it become an Olympic sport, Purdy noted. Uchida has coached San Jose State to 45 collegiate judo championships. He still assists the head coach these days.
And Malloy was giving out props to another Bay Area Olympian via Twitter, BleacherReport said, finding lots of mutual cheerleading going around the women of Team USA.
"My roommate Ariel Hsing of @usatabletennis just won round 2 @ the Olympics 2 get in2 the top 32! Good luck 2night girl! Your on fire #proud" Malloy tweeted under her Twitter handle, martidamus
Kaori Matsumoto of Japan won gold, defeating the Romanian Caprioriu, who got the silver.