China Pads Both Overall and Gold Medal Lead; U.S. Still Within Reach
The U.S. captain of the women’s gymnastics team, Aly Raisman, matched teammate Gabby Douglas by earning the gold on the floor exercise on Tuesday. Raisman also won bronze on the balance beam, making her the most decorated member of the women’s gymnastics team. "It was definitely the best floor routine that I've ever done," Raisman said. "To have it be at the Olympic Games, in the finals, is just really amazing and just a dream come true. That's what you work for your whole life." Catalina Ponor, the 2004 champion on floor, won the silver. Aliya Mustafina of Russia got the bronze, her fourth medal of the Olympics.
The U.S. women’s basketball team cruised into the semi-finals with a defeat over 91-48 over Canada. While the score was impressive in itself, the defense the U.S. women demonstrated may have been more impressive. The Americans forced three shot clock violations within the first seven minutes of the game. "It's one thing to miss a shot, but to not be able to get a shot off says a lot about your defense," U.S. coach Geno Auriemma said. "It's a double whammy. It brings your team closer together because it took all five guys to create that and takes the life out of the offense of the other team."
The U.S. men’s basketball team also remained undefeated with a victory over Argentina 126-97. The Americans only had a one point lead at half time, but turned things up a notch in the second half. Durant helped lead the team to victory by scoring 17 of his 28 points during the third quarter, in which the Americans put up an impressive 42 points. The U.S. will face the Australian team in the quarterfinals on Wednesday.
The U.S. women’s water polo team earned a well-deserved victory against a tough Australian team, winning 11-9 in overtime. With one second to go in regulation, the U.S. was up by one point and on their way to victory when Coach Adam Krikorian made a huge mistake by calling timeout. The problem was there were no timeouts left for the U.S. As a result, the Australians received a penalty shot and scored the goal that sent the game into overtime. Maggie Steffens and Kami Craig both scored in overtime to seal the deal. The 19-year-old Steffens, who raised her tournament tally to 16 goals, put the U.S. ahead halfway through the first of two three-minute overtime periods with a skip shot. Then Craig slotted home from close range to finish the scoring and give the Americans another shot at their first gold medal in the women's event as they face either Spain or Hungary in the final on Thursday.
China has padded their medal lead somewhat, with a current total of 73 overall total medals. They also lead the gold medal category with 34. The U.S. is still in contention for the lead with 70 total medals, and 30 golds.
Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.