LONDON (AP) — Nathan Adrian took out the Missile by a fingertip. Then Allison Schmitt dealt more heartache to the team from Down Under.
Adrian, a 23-year-old largely overshadowed by American stars such as Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte, made a name for himself by winning the 100-meter Olympic freestyle Wednesday. He lunged to the wall to edge James “The Missile” Magnussen by one-hundredth of a second — the slightest margin possible — and again deny Australia its first individual swimming gold of the London Games.
The Aussies took another bitter defeat in the final event of the evening, again to their American rivals as Schmitt chased down Alicia Coutts for gold in the 4x200 freestyle relay.
Schmitt dived in the water about a half-second behind but passed Coutts on their first return lap and won going away in 7 minutes, 42.92 seconds. The Australians settled for another silver in 7:44.41, while France took the bronze.
Daniel Gyurta and Rebecca Soni both set world records in the 200 breaststroke. The Hungarian won gold, while Soni set her mark in a semifinal heat, further proof that its still possible to go fast — really fast — even without the now-banned bodysuits. Five records have fallen over the first five days at the Olympic Aquatics Centre, defying those who felt it would take years, maybe even decades, to take down some of the marks set with technological assistance.
Adrian was on top of the world after touching in 47.52, giving the U.S. its first title in swimming’s signature event since Matt Biondi at the 1988 Seoul Olympics. Canada’s Brent Hayden took silver in 47.80, his country’s first medal ever in the furious down-and-back sprint.
Angel McCoughtry and the U.S. Olympic women’s team’s depth wore down Turkey.
McCoughtry scored 18 points and Tina Charles added 16 to help the Americans beat the Turkey 89-58 yesterday.
The Turks stayed close for a while. They had an early one-point lead in the first quarter before McCoughtry helped the Americans build a 15-point advantage by the half.
Turkey didn’t waiver, coming within 50-45 in the third quarter before McCoughtry and the reserves put the game away.
The crowd booed as the badminton players dumped shots into the net, trying to improve their positioning for the next round. The umpire and tournament referee Torsten Berg issued warnings, imploring them to exert maximum effort.
Badminton’s governing body finally had its say yesterday, and it wasn’t pleased, either.
Four teams were kicked out of the women’s doubles at the London Games for trying to lose on purpose, and a couple of the sport’s top players said they were embarrassed by the whole episode
The eight doubles players from China, South Korea and Indonesia were cited by the Badminton World Federation for “conducting oneself in a manner that is clearly abusive or detrimental to the sport.”
Kohei Uchimura wanted to lead Japan to the gold medal in men’s gymnastics, but he struggled in the final and settled for silver.
It was a much different story in the all-around competition.
Uchimura added Olympic gold to the world titles he’s won the last three years, and it was never much of a contest. Midway through the meet, the only question was how big his victory would be and who would be standing next to him on the medals podium.
Uchimura’s score of 92.690 was more than 1.5 points ahead of silver medalist Marcel Nguyen of Germany. American Danell Leyva got the bronze.
Venus Williams was eliminated in the singles competition at Wimbledon, losing 7-6 (5), 7-6 (5) to No. 7-seeded Angelique Kerber of Germany. Seeking a record fourth gold medal in Olympic tennis, Williams still has a shot with sister Serena in doubles.
Venus was diagnosed last year with an autoimmune disease that causes fatigue, and she looked weary against Kerber. She wasted a lead in each set.
Serena moved on, routing No. 13 seed Vera Zvonareva 6-1, 6-0. Maria Sharapova, Victoria Azarenka and Kim Clijsters also advanced.
On the men’s side, Britain’s Andy Murray outlasted Marcos Baghdatis 4-6, 6-1, 6-4. Novak Djokovic beat Lleyton Hewitt in three sets, and Roger Federer, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Juan Martin del Potro also won.
Two-time Olympic sabre champion Mariel Zagunis, who carried the American flag at the opening ceremony, lost her last two matches and failed to make the podium.
Kim Jiyeon of South Korea won the gold, beating Russia’s Sofya Velikaya in the final. Olga Kharlan of Ukraine got the bronze.
Seth Kelsey of the U.S. also dropped his last two matches in men’s individual epee, leaving him without a medal as well. Venezuela’s Ruben Limardo, Norway’s Bartosz Piasecki and Jung Jinsun of South Korea took the top three spots.
China completed a sweep of the synchronized diving events, winning the men’s 3-meter springboard to move halfway toward taking each of the diving gold medals.
Qin Kai and partner Luo Yutong led all six rounds of the final, totaling 477.00 points. Ilya Zakharov and Evgeny Kuznetsov of Russia took the silver at 459.63.
Kristian Ipsen and Troy Dumais of the U.S. earned the bronze at 446.70. It was the first medal of Dumais’ long career in his fourth Olympics, equaling Greg Louganis for most appearances by a male U.S. diver.
Maica Garcia scored twice in the last two minutes as Spain rallied for a 9-9 draw with the United States in the women’s tournament.
Rowie Webster scored five goals in Australia’s easy 16-3 win over Britain. Hungary beat China 11-10, and Russia edged Italy 7-4.
ELSEWHERE IN LONDON
Host Britain picked up its first two gold medals of the games when Helen Glover and Heather Stanning won the final of the women’s pair at the rowing regatta and cyclist Bradley Wiggins took the time trial, delighting the crowd at Hampton Court Palace on the banks of the River Thames.
American Kristin Armstrong defended her title in the women’s time trial, beating Judith Arndt of Germany by more than 15 seconds to get the gold.
Italy’s Daniele Molmenti raced to the gold in kayak slalom on his 28th birthday. ... Judo golds were awarded to France’s Lucie Decosse (women’s 70-kilogram) and South Korea’s Song Dae-nam (men’s 90-kg). ... Kim Jang-mi of South Korea won the women’s 25-meter pistol after setting an Olympic record for the best qualification score. ... Lu Xiaojun set snatch and total world records as China won the Olympic gold and silver medals in the men’s 77-kilogram weightlifting category. North Korea’s third weightlifting gold medal was awarded to Rim Jong Sim, who clinched the women’s 69-kilogram class in a dramatic finish. Rim lifted a total weight of 261 kilograms but was challenged until the end by Romania’s Roxana Cocos, who would have moved into first placed if she hadn’t failed with her final lift. ... Lin Dan advanced to the quarterfinals in his badminton title defense, beating Taufik Hidayat 21-9, 21-12 in a matchup of Olympic champions.