London 2012 Olympics: Thursday viewer’s guide

By Matt Brooks

The United States piled up seven medals on a tremendous day at the track Wednesday. Brittney Reese became the first American to win gold in the women’s long jump, Allyson Felix won gold the women’s 200 meters and Aries Merritt and Jason Richardson went 1-2 in the men’s 110-meter hurdles. And that was just the beginning.

Allyson Felix

Click the above image of Allyson Felix’s golden 200 meters to see a gallery of highlights from Day 12.

Kerri Walsh and Misty May-Treanor toppled fellow Americans April Ross and Jennifer Kessy to win their third straight gold in the women’s beach volleyball final .

Today’s marquee matchup is on the pitch at New Wembley Stadium where the United States women’s soccer team looks to avenge their devastating defeat to Japan in last summer’s Women’s World Cup. Elsewhere, the U.S. women’s water polo team goes for gold against Spain while Usain Bolt will try to make millions of jaws drop yet again when he runs the 200 meters.

A total of 23 gold medals will be handed out in 12 different sports. How will you possibly keep track of all the action? Consider this your guide.

Going for gold

Here is the list of sports that will hand out medals today, along with their respective times and channels on NBC’s coverage platforms (and for a full look at today’s TV schedule, check our listings here):

Canoe/kayak – men’s C2 1000m, men’s K4 1000m, women’s K1 500m, women’s K2 500m (4:30 a.m., streaming)

Equestrian – dressage individual grand prix (7:30 a.m., MSNBC): Steffen Peters and his trusty horse Ravel suit up one more time.

Sailing – men’s 470 – two person dinghy (8 a.m., streaming): Australians Mathew Belcher and Malcom Page lead the field going into the medal race.

Boxing – women’s 51kg, 60kg, 75kg (11:30 a.m., streaming): Just 17 years old, American middle weight Claressa Shields goes toe-to-toe with Russia’s Nadezda Torlopova in the gold-medal match.

Diving – women’s 10-meter platform (2 p.m.): Americans Katie Bell and Brittany Viola made the semifinals, but both are well behind the pace set by leader Ruolin Chen of China.

Soccer – U.S. vs. Japan (2:45 p.m., NBC Sports): Alex Morgan’s last-minute header in extra time stunned Canada, sent the United States to another gold medal match and left everyone watching breathless. Now Abby Wambach, Megan Rapinoe and company finally get their rematch against Japan, which beat them in penalty kicks at last summer’s Women’s World Cup. But will they have enough left in the tank to grab their third straight gold? (Click the above video for Soccer Insider Steven Goff’s match preview.)

Water polo – women’s final – U.S. vs. Spain (3 p.m., NBC): Despite two trips to the gold medal game, the United States has never won gold in women’s water polo. But after they survived overtime against Australia in the semifinals, this could be their time.

Beach volleyball – men’s final – Brazil vs. Germany (4 p.m., NBC): Eight years after he won gold in Athens, Brazil’s Emanuel Rego teams with Alison Cerutti to take on Julius Brink and Jonas Reckermann.

Wrestling – women’s freestyle 55kg, 72kg (2 p.m., streaming): Americans Kelsey Campbell (55 kg) and Ali Sue Bernard (72 kg) hit the mat.

Taekwondo – women’s 57kg, men’s 68kg (NBC): Arlington native Terrence Jennings stunned defending silver medalist Mark Lopez at the Olympic trials to earn his spot in London. Now the 26-year-old is looking to make the most of his opportunity under the bright lights.

Ashton Eaton leads the field heading into the final five events of the men's decathlon. (Adrian Dennis/AFP/Getty Images)

Track and field (streaming):

  • Men’s decathlon (4 a.m. – 5 p.m.): World record holder Ashton Eaton had the fastest times in both the 100 and 400 meters and is in first place through the first five events with 963 total points. Fellow American Trey Hardee (904) is not far behind in third.
  • Men’s triple jump (2:20 p.m.): American Christian Taylor‘s 17.21-meter mark was the best among qualifiers for today’s final. Fellow American Will Claye (16.87) is also still in the medal hunt.
  • Men’s 800 meters (3 p.m.): Mohammed Aman of Ethiopia (1:44.34) and David Lekuta Rudisha of Kenya (1:44.35) posted the top two qualifying times.
  • Men’s 200m (3:55 p.m.): After his breathtaking 100-meter sprint, what does Usain Bolt have in store for an encore?
  • Women’s javelin (4 p.m.): Defending gold medalist Barbora Spotakova of the Czech Republic (66.19 meters) and defending bronze medalist Christina Obergfoll of Germany (66.14) had the top two throws in qualifying.

Best of the rest

Women’s volleyball semifinals – U.S. vs. South Korea (10 a.m., streaming): The Americans are on a collision course with defending gold medalists Brazil, but first they cannot afford to overlook a Korean team that pushed them to four games in pool play.

Women’s basketball semifinals – U.S. vs. Australia (12 p.m., NBC Sports): The United States defeated Australia in each of the last three gold medal games. This time, their dual comes one round earlier.

Rhythmic Gymnastics – individual all-around (7 a.m., streaming & NBC): Bethesda’s Julie Zetlin is on a mission to give her sport some extra attention back home.

Tweets from our fleet across the pond

 

 

More

Women’s soccer gold-medal match reprises World Cup final

Usain Bolt takes aim at history in the 200 meters

Miss anything? Read past live blogs: Opening Ceremonies | Day 1 | Day 2Day 3 | Day 4 | Day 5 | Day 6 | Day 7 | Day 8 | Day 9 | Day 10 | Day 11 | Day 12