TOWN OF TONAWANDA, N.Y. — Anita Alvarez is a synchronized swimmer with Team USA, which is on their way to Toronto for a competition next week.
But first, Team USA decided to stop in Western New York to put on a show here in her hometown.
"You know they call it the City of Good Neighbors, and as you can see today from the turnout here, it's just so true," Alvarez said. "It felt really cool to be home with the team training here, and we felt super welcomed, and just like we were all at home."
Alvarez fainted in the pool last June during the World Aquatics Championships. She was saved by her coach, Andrea Fuentes.
"I just feel that that was my job," Fuentes said. "I don't feel anything else. I won't ever let someone sink because, no matter who it is, I'll always be there, holding their back."
Next week's international competition will be the team's first chance this season to face off against their rivals, Canada and Mexico.
"My big goal now is to qualify with the whole team in the team event, so our team is pushing really hard to get that qualifying spot this coming fall at Pan-American Games," Alvarez said Sunday.
Team USA will compete against the North and South American countries at the Pan-American Games. If they win, they can earn a ticket to the Olympics.
While home, Alvarez said she was able to get one hometown treat that she's been craving.
"The only one I got this time was Tim Hortons," she said.