TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida State alumni Nick Lucena was one of the eight athletes named to the 2016 U.S. Olympic Beach Volleyball Team on June 12.Lucena will make his Olympic Games debut alongside Phil Dalhausser, who won gold in Beijing in 2008. The pair will compete from August 6-18 on the Copacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
A native of Davie, Fla. Lucena graduated from FSU with a degree in sport management in 2003 and is married to current FSU beach volleyball coach, Brooke Niles.
“It’s amazing to qualify for the Olympics and it always has been a huge goal of mine,” Lucena said. “There is nothing better than playing with ‘USA’ on your back. However, our ultimate goal is to go there and compete for a medal.”
As the top American pair, Lucena and Dalhausser will be the No. 3 seed in the Games after they won gold at the final Olympic qualification event in Hamburg, Germany on June 12.
The duo rejoined forces in August 2015 at the Long Beach Grand Slam to capture silver. After, the pair won six gold and three silver medals in order to fulfill their qualifications.
Dalhausser and Lucena led the World Tour in win percentage at 88.5 behind a 46-6 record in 2016. Against the current Olympic qualified teams, the pair is 27-10.
When Lucena is not competing, he spends time in Tallahassee where he observes the FSU beach volleyball team in addition to training.
For more information on FSU beach volleyball, visit Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
*USA Volleyball contributed to this report.