Skip to main content
Part of complete coverage on

Olympics Day 12: Golden day for the U.S.

By Laura Smith-Spark and Steve Almasy, CNN
updated 9:17 PM EDT, Wed August 8, 2012
Kobe Bryant, No.10 of United States, shoots over Patrick Mills, No.5 of Australia, in the third quarter during the men's basketball quarterfinal game on Wednesday, August 8. <a href='http://www.cnn.com/2012/08/07/worldsport/gallery/olympics-day-eleven/index.html'>Check out Day 11 of competition</a> from Tuesday, August 7. The Games ran through Sunday, August 12. Kobe Bryant, No.10 of United States, shoots over Patrick Mills, No.5 of Australia, in the third quarter during the men's basketball quarterfinal game on Wednesday, August 8. Check out Day 11 of competition from Tuesday, August 7. The Games ran through Sunday, August 12.
HIDE CAPTION
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
Day 12: The best photos of the Olympics
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35
36
37
38
39
40
41
42
43
44
45
46
47
48
49
50
51
52
53
54
55
56
57
58
59
60
61
62
63
64
65
66
67
68
69
70
71
72
73
74
75
76
77
78
79
80
81
82
83
84
85
86
87
88
89
90
91
92
93
94
95
96
97
98
99
100
101
102
103
104
>
>>
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Beach volleyball duo wins third consecutive gold
  • Allyson Felix of the United States blazes to gold in the women's 200 meters
  • Team USA win's in men's basketball behind LeBron's Olympic first
  • "It is a historic moment," says Sarah Attar, the first Saudi woman to compete in athletics

London (CNN) -- Allyson Felix, Aries Merritt and Brittany Reese led the U.S. medal haul at Olympic Stadium on Wednesday night, winning their events in scintillating style.

And the day wrapped up with the U.S. men's basketball team taking another step toward another gold.

Felix won the women's 200 meters with a dominant stretch effort, holding off Shelly-Ann Fraser Price of Jamaica and clocking a rousing 21.88. Carmelita Jeter of the United States was third.

"I thought back to the disappointment in Beijing," Felix, the silver medalist in Beijing and Athens, said. "It's been a long road, I never wanted to give up. It's been a journey -- never easy, but you can't lose sight of your dream. ... I've wanted it for so long."

U.S. athletes tweet God, Bible at Olympics

In all, the U.S. won seven athletics medals, including Merritt's gold and Jason Richardson's silver in the men's 110-meter hurdles.

Felix Sanchez's tears for grandmother
Jackie Joyner-Kersee talks Team USA
Lucky towel keeps gymnast focused
Why has China done so well in London?

Merritt's time of 12.92 was just .01 off the Olympic record.

"I trained for this intensity. I thought if I treat it like a practice then I could do ridiculous things," Merritt said. "I execute so well and when I practice there's no pressure, so if I (could) treat it like a practice, then there's no pressure."

Team GB's Lawrence Clarke -- heir to an English baronetcy and also a distant relative of U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt -- acquitted himself well, finishing just behind bronze medalist Hansle Parchment of Jamaica.

"I can't believe I came fourth in the Olympic Games," Clarke said. "I didn't even expect to make the final. I ran the semifinal treating it as a final, and I ran a personal best there, so that was a dream come true."

The race was without China's Liu Xiang, who failed to make it past the first-round heat for a second consecutive Olympics. Liu, who took gold in 2004, faced an outpouring of criticism when he was forced to withdraw in Beijing with an Achilles tendon injury, but he received a more sympathetic response this time around.

Reese and Janay Deloach went 1-3 in the long jump, with Reese leaping 7.12 meters (23-feet-4) to beat Elena Sokolova of Russia.

"This is exactly what I had in my mind. I've trained four years for this," Reese said.

American Lashinda Demus nearly caught Natalya Antyukh at the line in the 400-meter hurdles, but settled for second.

Jamaica's Yohan Blake strolled through the line in his 200-meter semifinal, with Team USA's Wallace Spearmon also through to Thursday's final.

Blake's compatriot Usain Bolt also cruised through his semifinal, as he targets a repeat of his double triumph in the 100-meter and 200-meter races in Beijing.

Bolt told the BBC, the official broadcaster for the London Games, he is confident of beating Blake in the 200-meters final.

"No doubt whatsoever. I'm ready, this is my favorite event, so I'm looking forward to it," he said. "I know what I can do -- I never doubt myself."

The medals kept coming for the United States, which now tops the table with 81 medals overall to China's 77.

Sand swan song

Americans Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh Jennings made it three Olympic golds in a row, beating countrywomen April Ross and Jennifer Kessy two sets to none.

"This means a lot. It is my last match, but I'm OK with slipping away because this has been a special finale," May-Treanor said. "Whether we had finished on top or not, the thing that I'm proud of is us sticking together."

May-Treanor says she looks forward to raising a family.

"It's time for me to be a wife, I want to be a mom," she said. "I want to share this time with my family. All of us athletes sacrifice more of the family than people maybe realize."

Family life is a little more difficult for the Treanors. Misty's husband, Matt, is a catcher for the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Walsh, who took time off from the sport to have two children, said May-Treanor was like a sister to her.

"It's been 11 years of fun and crazy time," she said to her now ex-teammate. "You are a dear, dear friend ... and I'm glad that you went out the way you deserved."

U.S. female gymnasts continue domination
German rower left Games amid controversy
Great Britain feeling good about Olympics
Guatemala's first-ever Games medal

Hoops history for LeBron

LeBron James became the first men's basketball player to have a triple double in an Olympics game. He scored 11 points, had 14 rebounds and 11 assists to lead the U.S. into the semifinals against Argentina.

Kobe Bryant got hot in the second half, scoring all of his team-high 20 points in the final 20 minutes as the Americans beat the Aussies 119-86. Twelve of those came on four 3-pointers in the middle of the fourth quarter that helped expand the U.S. lead from 15 to 25.

"I wasn't playing a good tournament. For some reason, it was my night tonight," he said. "Got some shots, got into rhythm. At the end of the day, we know that we have two more games to win."

U.S. coach Mike Krzyzewski said the Argentinians play well when they play as a unit.

"They are a better team together than they are individually, and individually they have two of the best players of international basketball [Luis Scola and Manu Ginobili]," he said. "We played two tough games against them, and we expect this one to be the toughest."

In Friday's other semifinal, Russia will play Spain.

More good U.S. news from the Olympic Stadium

The men's decathlon got going Wednesday, with athletes taking part in the 100 meters, long jump, shot put and high jump. Team USA's Ashton Eaton and Trey Hardee were in first and second place after the first five events.

"So far, I am somewhat satisfied. I am in a good position," Eaton said. "My goal is just to win. I am not considering a world record."

Team GB's Mo Farah, who took gold in the 10,000 meters Saturday to the delight of the home crowd, reached the 5,000-meter final after finishing third in his heat.

The women's 800-meter heats got under way, with defending champion Pamela Jelimo of Kenya the fastest winner of her heat. Team GB's Lynsey Sharp qualified close behind her.

Caster Semenya, the South African athlete who was the subject of a gender test by the International Association of Athletics Federations after her victory in Berlin at the world championships three years ago, also qualified as the second-fastest finisher in her heat.

Two runners competed wearing the hijab: 20-year-old Palestinian Woroud Sawalha and Sarah Attar from Saudi Arabia, reflecting the diversity of this Games, the first to see women athletes included in every one of the 204 delegations.

"I'm proud to represent Palestine," Sawalha said. "My parents called me before the race and said, 'All Palestinians are watching and hoping you get a good result.' I hope I will do well in the future. This Olympic Games is a first step for me."

Neither qualified for the next round, but Attar made history alongside teammate Wojdan Ali Seraj Abdulrahim Shaherkani, in judo, as the first two women to compete for Saudi Arabia. Brunei and Qatar also sent women competitors for the first time.

"It is a historic moment," Attar said, according to the official Games website. "I hope it will make a difference. It is a huge step forward."

Historic gold medal boxing bouts set

These Games also mark the first time women's boxing is part of the Olympic program, with three semifinal bouts taking place Wednesday. Team GB's Nicola Adams made it through to the women's 51-kilogram flyweight gold medal bout after defeating India's Chungeijang Mery Kom Hmangte.

Adams will take on China's Ren Cancan for gold, after Ren beat Marlen Esparza of Team USA in their semifinal.

Both Esparza and Hmangte are awarded bronze, as there are no bronze-medal matches.

Odds and ends

Blood was spilled in the first women's field hockey semifinal, as New Zealand player Katie Glynn took a nasty blow to the head from a Dutch opponent's stick. She returned to the field to play on, her head swathed in bandages.

The game was finally decided in a tense penalty shootout after neither side scored in extra time, with victory -- and a place in the gold-medal final -- going to the Netherlands.

There was also drama on the BMX track, where Team USA's Brooke Crain needed medical attention after coming off her BMX and smashing into a bump on the track during the seeding run.

It's not the end of the 19-year-old's Olympic dream though. A tweet from the BMX Program Director at USA Cycling said Crain "is sore but will be ready for Friday," when the semi-finals take place.

Elsewhere, the American men's volleyball team was knocked out by Italy in the quarterfinal. Italy will face Brazil in the semifinal Friday.

China beat South Korea to take the gold medal in the men's team table tennis final, and the bronze went to Germany.

The victory means China has won gold in every table tennis event played at the London Games and in Beijing in 2008, according to the official Games website.

Earlier, Katrin Wagner-Augustin of Germany lost out on her second attempt at becoming the second woman in Olympic history to win a gold medal at four consecutive Games after helping take silver in the women's kayak four (K4). She still has one more shot at gold in the women's kayak single final on Thursday. Lisa Leslie, who won gold with the U.S. basketball teams in 1996-2008, is the only other woman to do so.

Gold in the women's K4 went to Hungary and bronze to Belarus.

On a good morning for Hungary on the water, it also took the gold in the men's double kayak final. Silver went to Portugal, giving the country its first medal of the Games.

Norway and Germany took gold in the men's single kayak and single canoe sprint events, respectively.

Australia, whose athletes got off to a slow start in the medal stakes but are now gathering steam, took gold in the men's 49er sailing, while New Zealand claimed silver.

Over at Greenwich Park, the individual show jumping final put horses and riders through their paces.

Switzerland's Steve Guerdat came out with the gold after posting the only two clear rounds of the event.

Silver went to the Netherlands' Gerco Schroder, with Ireland's Cian O'Connor pushed into bronze position after a jump-off. That bronze is Ireland's first medal of the Games.

Great Britain, which took gold in the team show jumping event this week and its first ever dressage team gold Tuesday, could only manage equal fifth for rider Nick Skelton, disappointing the home crowds.

Team GB, for which Queen Elizabeth II's granddaughter Zara Phillips helped win silver in the event, is not the only delegation to count royalty among its athletes: Prince Abdullah Al Saud of Saudi Arabia took part in the individual show jumping, coming joint 26th on his horse, Davos.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 9:53 AM EDT, Mon August 13, 2012
The moment that Team GB's Mo Farah won the 10,000 meters was a wonderful collision of electricity.
updated 11:34 AM EDT, Mon August 13, 2012
His blistering pace and larger-than-life antics made him the king of the track in London, and bolstered his claims to be a "living legend."
updated 5:44 AM EDT, Tue August 14, 2012
Disappointment for Nigeria's Muizat Ajoke Odumosu, who came last in the 400m hurdles final, London 2012 Olympics.
The Olympics are generally won and lost long before the opening ceremony cauldron is touched by fire.
updated 3:38 AM EDT, Sun August 12, 2012
Fans of the home side, Team GB, wave Union Jack flags during the Olympic Games
CNN's Richard Quest believes the London Games will be regarded as having brought the Olympics concept home.
updated 12:33 PM EDT, Sat August 11, 2012
Strategist Alastair Campbell says he never imagined London 2012 would be quite the triumph it turned out to be.
updated 4:57 PM EDT, Tue August 14, 2012
Award-winning director Danny Boyle celebrates the best of British music in London 2012's Olympic Closing Ceremony.
updated 9:52 AM EST, Thu January 31, 2013
From Usain Bolt's record-setting achievements to an unexpected Ugandan gold, London 2012 has provided a wide array of highlights.
updated 11:05 PM EDT, Sun August 12, 2012
CNN's Amanda Davies recaps the London 2012 Olympics from the opening ceremony on July 27 to the finale on day 16.
updated 1:02 PM EDT, Sun August 12, 2012
Mo Farah and Usain Bolt celebrate their success at the London 2012 Olympic Games by copying each other's
It's been just over two weeks since the Queen parachuted into London's Olympic Stadium, her apricot dress flapping in the breeze.
updated 8:14 AM EDT, Wed August 15, 2012
When the world's top marathon runners bid to win Olympic gold, they would do well to draw inspiration from one of the greatest athletes in the history of track and field.
updated 12:33 PM EDT, Sat August 11, 2012
Team GB supporters with their faces painted in Union Jack designs at the Olympic Stadium in London.
Alastair Campbell always thought London 2012 would be a success, but never imagined it would be quite the triumph it has turned out to be.
updated 6:21 AM EDT, Fri August 10, 2012
Adrien Niyonshuti is unlikely to win an Olympic medal, and he will do well to even finish his event, but his story is surely one of the most inspirational.
updated 12:05 PM EDT, Fri August 10, 2012
The colors of the Olympic Rings at the Olympic Park in Stratford, east London, August 2012.
Olympic fever has cheered up London and made it a more welcoming place, but will optimism be one of the legacies of the Games?
updated 2:25 PM EDT, Fri August 10, 2012
Wojdan Shaherkani's Olympic debut was short, but sweet -- the Saudi judoka said competing at the Games was
London 2012 is the first Olympics to feature women in every national team, with Jacques Rogge hailing a "major boost for gender equality."
updated 8:40 PM EDT, Thu August 9, 2012
An impoverished South Korean gymnast has not only struck Olympic gold, but also reaped a $444,000 donation in a veritable rags to riches tale.
updated 8:46 PM EDT, Wed August 8, 2012
Britain's hero Jessica Ennis is set to cash in after winning heptathlon gold, but the poster girl of the 2012 Olympics says fame is not her motivation.
updated 3:46 AM EDT, Wed August 8, 2012
China is rallying around fallen hurdler Liu Xiang after he failed to make it past the first-round heat for a second consecutive Olympics.
updated 3:30 PM EDT, Fri August 3, 2012
The first woman to win Olympic gold almost died in a plane crash, but remarkably returned to run again for the U.S. in 1936.
updated 11:04 AM EDT, Tue August 7, 2012
Don Paige could not bear to watch the race he knew he could win. The 1980 Moscow Olympics were the death of a dream for many athletes.
updated 10:21 AM EDT, Sat August 4, 2012
Ricardo Blas Jr
While Michael Phelps and Usain Bolt grab the headlines, little-known athletes from around the world keep alive the original spirit of the Olympics.
Athletes spend years eating the right foods ... and then must resist the free fast food in the Olympic village. How do they do it?
ADVERTISEMENT