Florida 18-year-old is 1st US women’s taekwondo gold medalist — and she’s just getting started

Japan 2020

TOKYO (WFLA) — The United States is making history in the Olympics this year.

Rising star Anastasija Zolotic of Largo, Florida, won the country’s first-ever gold medal in women’s taekwondo.

“It’s pretty unbelievable. I think it still hasn’t hit me. I’m trying to kind of process it all and kind of get into it, but I think it’s just so unreal, and something I’ve been trying to work on forever. It just happened like that overnight. It’s kind of crazy to me,” the 18-year-old Olympian said. “It’s everything I’ve tried to work for. I mean, I moved to Colorado so I could get to where I am today.”

Zolotic made a phenomenal run through the featherweight bracket, but her final competition was the toughest.

“The gold medal one was kind of tougher because it’s a gold medal match. In the beginning, I was kind of feeling like a little nerves were settling in while we were fighting, and it was like the wrong time to set in,” she recalled.

Zolotic ended up working through her nerves and dominated in the third round, clinching the gold and making Olympic history.

“It’s pretty unbelievable, and it just shows anything is possible,” she said.

And Zolotic is just getting started.

“I’ve never pushed myself to this limit that I did yesterday…” she said. “Yeah, I mean, this isn’t even, this is just the beginning.”

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