U.S. Close Behind China in Medal Count
Several new developments have taken place today in various Olympic venues, including tennis, basketball, swimming, shooting, and gymnastics.
Serena Williams from the United States was the fourth seed of the tennis event, and she beat former No. 1 player Jelena Jankovic of Serbia 6-3, 6-1 on Centre Court to advance to the next round. Williams has won two gold medals in doubles with her sister Venus, but has yet to win gold in Olympic singles.
The United States’ men’s basketball team beat France to pick up their first victory. Kevin Durant led the team with 22 points, and although the scoreboard reflected a dominating win for the U.S., 98-71, it wasn’t always perfect. The United States overcame some early sloppy play and foul trouble to beat the French who were led by Tony Parker of the San Antonio Spurs. "They're going to be very, very tough to beat," Parker said.
Dana Volmer not only won a gold medal for the U.S., but she also set a world record in the 100 meter butterfly. Volmer didn’t even qualify four years ago in Beijing, so this was a major accomplishment. She was third at the turn but powered to the wall for a time of 55.98 seconds, beating the record of 56.06 set by Sweden's Sarah Sjostrom. Strom not only saw her world record fall, but she also failed to medal coming in fourth place. Yu Ling took silver for China, and Alicia Coutts took bronze for Australia. "I'm on top of the world right now." Volmer said. "I still know I can go faster."
In men’s swimming, the U.S.-led Lochte-Phelps team lost in a shocker to France in the 400-meter freestyle relay. The U.S. did not have to worry about the defending Australian champs this time, which didn’t even medal this time around. France came in with a time of 3 minutes, 9.93 seconds, Lochte and the Americans earned for silver in 3:10.38. Russia took the bronze in 3:11.41, edging Australia by just 0.22 seconds for the bronze.
The U.S. women gymnastics team is atop the standings with a comfortable lead, but surprisingly Jordyn Wieber failed to make the overall finals. Wieber finished behind teammates Aly Raisman and Gabby Douglas. Countries are limited to two gymnasts in the all-around and event finals.
Kimberly Rhode earned the gold for the U.S. in skeet shooting. Rhode set an Olympic record in the event, scoring 74. Rhode bested both Slovakia and Russia, who earned silver and bronze with scores of 70 and 69, respectively.
All of the volleyball teams won their first match in pool play for the United States. Both the men and women are setting the stage for medals for the U.S. in both beach volleyball, as well as regular volleyball.
The U.S. still trails China in the medal count, with 11 total medals, including three golds.