STORY BY ADAM ROGAN
After crossing the finish line at the Adidas 21k Marathon in his home city of Santa Cruz, Bolivia, former Bulldog tennis standout Mauricio Ballivian died tragically this past Sunday.
Upon finishing the race, Ballivian collapsed to the ground and hit his head. No official cause of death has been released, but the fall was likely the culprit.
Ballivian graduated in 2011 with 194 wins, the fifth most in Drake Men’s Tennis history. He is also tied for the most doubles wins in the program with a record of 95-32 and has the best doubles win percentage: .748.
In 2011, Ballivian won the Missouri Valley Conference individual and doubles tournament as well as being an MVC Scholar-Athlete. He was also a two-time MVC Player of the Year, the first athlete in league history to complete the feat in back-to-back seasons.
Ballivan was an incredible athlete in life and took his last breaths doing what he loved. The last known photo of Ballivian is of him smiling and giving a thumbs up to a cameraman from Diez.bo, a Bolivian sports website.
Diez’s tagline is “Pura pasió por el deporte” – “Pure passion for sport,” a sentiment that Ballivian surely believed in.
He was 26 years old.