Five athletes with Long Island ties are along 11,000 from around the world competing for their chance to take home a gold medal in the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, which starts Friday. The four native Long Islanders representing Team USA are soccer stars Allie Long of Northport and Crystal Dunn of Rockville Centre, WNBA all-star and three-time Olympic gold medalist Sue Bird of Syosset, and race walker Maria Michta-Coffey of Nesconset. A fifth, sailor Bora Gulari of Michigan, lived on Long Island when he was a youngster.
The only athlete who made the cut by February was Bora Gulari, a skipper on the U.S. Olympic Sailing Team who's formerly from Long Island and now living in Detroit. Syosset native, WNBA all star and three-time gold medalist Sue Bird is expected to make the US women’s basketball team once the roster is finalized. Other locals facing Olympic trials on the road to Rio include 2012 Olympic racewalker Maria Michta-Coffey of Farmingville, boxer Cam Awesome of Uniondale as well as soccer players Crystal Dunn of Rockville Centre and Allie Long of Huntington.