Day 15: Women’s basketball and volleyball, men’s soccer, track & field

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The U.S. women’s basketball team will be playing for its fifth straight gold medal when it faces France, while the volleyball team tries to win its first gold when it plays defending champion Brazil. The men’s 4×100 relay is the highlight on the track, as the U.S. tries to top Jamaica and Usain Bolt. In the men’s soccer final, Brazil and Mexico square off.

What else should you be watching? Consult today’s viewer’s guide.

Miss anything? Read past live blogs: Opening Ceremonies | Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4 | Day 5 | Day 6 | Day 7 | Day 8 | Day 9 | Day 10 | Day 11 | Day 12 | Day 13 | Day 14

Join in the conversation.

SATURDAY, AUGUST 11 (DAY 15)

NBC

10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Canoe/kayak – gold medal finals in men’s K-1 200-meters, C-1 200-meters and K-2 200-meters and women’s K-1 200-meters (10 a.m.)
Women’s volleyball – bronze medal match: South Korea vs. Japan (10:45 a.m.)
Women’s cycling – cross country mountain biking (12:45 p.m., 2 p.m., 2:45 p.m.)
Rhythmic gymnastics – individual all-around gold medal final (1 p.m.)
Men’s wrestling – freestyle bouts in 60kg, 84kg and 120kg weight classes (2:15 p.m.)
Women’s basketball – gold medal game: United States vs. France (Live, 4 p.m.)

8 p.m. – midnight
Track and field – gold medal finals in men’s 4×100 and women’s 4×400-meter relays, men’s 5000-meter run, men’s javelin, women’s 800-meter run and women’s high jump
Men’s diving – platform gold medal final
Women’s volleyball – gold medal match: United States vs. Brazil.

12:30 a.m. – 1:30 a.m. (Sunday)
Men’s wrestling – freestyle finals in 60kg, 84kg and 120kg weight classes

NBC Sports Network

4 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Track and field – men’s 50-kilometer walk (Live, 4 a.m.)
Taekwondo – women’s 67kg and men’s 80kg bouts (8 a.m., 5:30 p.m.)
Men’s soccer – gold medal match: Brazil vs. Mexico (Live, 10 a.m.)
Track and field – women’s 20-kilometer walk (Live, noon)
Women’s handball – bronze medal match: South Korea vs. Spain (2 p.m.), gold medal match: Norway vs. Montenegro (Live, 3:30 p.m.)

MSNBC

10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Men’s modern pentathlon – fencing and swimming (10 a.m.)
Men’s field hockey – bronze medal match: Australia vs. Britain (Live, 10:30 a.m.)
Women’s basketball – bronze medal match: Australia vs. Russia (Live, noon)
Men’s modern pentathlon – riding and combined (Live, 1:45 p.m.)
Taekwondo – women’s 67kg and men’s 80kg qualifying bouts (2:15 p.m.)
Men’s field hockey – gold medal match: Germany vs. Netherlands (Live, 3 p.m.)

CNBC

3:30 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Men’s boxing – gold medal finals in light flyweight, bantamweight, light welterweight, middleweight and heavyweight divisions (Live)

NBC Olympic Basketball Channel

Noon – midnight
Women’s basketball — bronze medal game: Australia vs. Russia (Live at noon, Replay at 2 p.m.); gold medal
game: United States vs. France (Live at 4 p.m., Replays at 6:30 p.m. and 9:15 p.m.)

NBC Olympic Soccer Channel

10 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Men’s soccer – gold medal game: Brazil vs. Mexico (Live at 10 a.m., Replays at 12:30 p.m., 2:45 p.m., 5
p.m. and 7:15 p.m.)

Telemundo

Packaged Spanish-language coverage includes men’s soccer gold medal match, women’s volleyball bronze medal
match, men’s boxing finals and rhythmic gymnastics.

Usain Bolt clinches win in 4X100M

A big night for USA and Jamaica, but anchor Usain Bolt crushed the competition and helped win the men’s 4X100M relay. Jamaica set a new world record and Bolt just won his third medal. It was a fantastic race that didn’t disappoint.

Usain Bolt

And that’s it for Joe and I, folks. Have a good night and enjoy the rest of the evening’s Olympic offerings. We’ll be back at it tomorrow for the closing ceremony!

 

USA dominates women's 4x400 race

USA kills it with their remarkable showing at the 4×400 race. Allyson Felix, Sanya Richards-Ross, Francine McCorory and DeeDee Trotter smoked the other teams throughout the whole race. They narrowly missed beating the 1988 world record, but no matter, “oh say can you see” the victory!

Allyson Felix

 

Sally Jenkins on David Boudia's gold medal

Read Washington Post columnist Sally Jenkins on the magic of David Boudia’s gold medal.

A sample:

Here’s how you conquer fear: You take the thing that scares you most, and you draw it over and over. As an 11-year-old, the Noblesville, Ind., resident was so frightened of heights he didn’t even like the lower platforms. But a gymnastics coach told him to practice drawing dives, tumbling maneuvers from pinnacles. So every day he drew.

David Boudia wins gold

 

David Boudia

US diver David Boudia, after a phenomenally executed and difficult dive, wins the men’s 10m platform diving race. He looks humbled, in shock and excited! (sorry, Tom Daley, you’re still the apple of many, many eyes).

Diving observations

A. Nick McCrory’s coach Drew Johansen has an American flag sticker stuck on the back of head. Amazing.

B. I’m feeling positively unfit watching all of these impossibly fit male divers who are all positively smaller than me.

Impossibly skinny male divers.

 

 

David Boudia leads

US diver and native Texan David Boudia enjoys the top slot as of Round 3 (out of 6) in the men’s 10m platform final as of Round 3 (out of 6).

 

Mo Farah wins 5000m race

Many smiles for Farah who was absolutely astounding at the end. And the show-off even does some crunches!

Mo Farah takes the stage

I’m behind on the Mo Farah mania. The Somalian-born, long distance runner for the Great Britain team who trained in Portland has earned the fame and he’s trending on Twitter right now. But I’m with it now. He’s my pick for the 5000m race.

Mo Farah

 

 

Men's diving kicks off

Men’s diving just started and at the end of Round 5, China leads with Lin Yue and Qui Bo, but U.S.’s David McRory isn’t far at fourth. Great Britain favorite Tom Daley redeemed himself today after a poor showing Friday night.

Matthew Mitcham dives.

My new favorite, though, is Australia’s Matthew Mitcham for his cheery attitude. As the judges said, “he unburdened himself” and seemed far more at ease than the other divers.

The Chinese divers do look fantastic (granted: I have no real technical expertise on diving. They just look sharp and the judges seem to corroborate that assertion).

The best part so far tonight? Hearing the insufferable Ke$ha’s tik tok playing in the background.

Oh right, the Olympics

After that hour long detour into WW II history, the Olympics have returned. It’s sort of jarring to go from Britain’s heroism during World War II to shots of guys in tiny Speedos doing flips. All the more reason that NBC should have jettisoned that entire first hour. It just wasn’t the time or place for a history lesson.

Forget history, need Olympics

Ditto to Joe’s post, for as much of an anglophile as I am… this is just too boring for a Saturday night. It is definitely not the way to spend the NIGHT before the closing ceremony.

So, could we talk more about the fab five? #gymnasticsobsessed

The U.S. gymnastics team won the team gold.

Or more specifically, the stand-out star McKaya Maroney? She is not impressed with British history.

Britain's military history

Yes, the history of Britain’s role in World War II is incredibly interesting, but what does this have to do with the Olympics? I think NBC has erred in making this the first 30 minutes of their broadcast this evening.

Tonight's Olympic live coverage

Evening y’all — Joe and I will be covering tonight’s Olympics coverage (can you believe two weeks have already come to a close?). Expect: the track and field finals, men’s diving and women’s volleyball. But before we begin, a documentary on Great Britain’s struggles and triumphs during WWII. And more of Bob Costas impeccable enunciation. Looking forward to the evening!

Durant and Ledecky

How great was it to see Kevin Durant saying in tonight’s NBC pre-Olympics show that one of the most inspiring athletes for him at this Olympics was Katie Ledecky. The 23-year-old NBA superstar and the 15-year-old swimmer have this in common: they’re both Washingtonians.

Gallery: Boudia wins gold in platform diving

olympic mascots

 

GALLERY: Click on the image above to see photos from the men’s platform diving competition, which was surprisingly won by American David Boudia.

Italian superior in taekwondo final

Carlo Molfetta celebrates winning gold in men’s taekwondo. (Hannah Johnston/Getty Images)

Carlo Molfetta of Italy won the gold medal in the men’s taekwondo 80kg over Anthony Obame of Gabon. The fight ended tied on points, 9-9, but Molfetta was declared the winner by the judges on superiority.

Robelis Despaigne of Cuba and Xiaobo Liu of China won the bronze medals.

Gold gives Ukrainian heavyweight a reason to dance

Oleksandr Usyk of the Ukraine celebrates after winning the gold medal in heavyweight boxing. (AP Photo/Mark Duncan)

Heavyweight Oleksandr Usyk of Ukraine outscored Clemente Russo of Italy in the third round, 6-3, to take the gold medal.

The bout was tied at 8 points apiece after two rounds. When the final result — a 14-11 decision — was announced, Russo – a silver medalist in Beijing – embraced Usyk, who then performed a series of dances in the ring, the perfect end to Saturday’s fight card.

NBC to stream Closing Ceremonies live online

NBC announced today that it will stream Sunday’s Closing Ceremonies live online. The network will once again air the event on television on a tape-delay basis in prime time.

NBC drew criticism after it declined to live-stream the Opening Ceremonies, opting instead to show it on television a few hours later in prime time. Via the Associated Press:

The opening ceremony was watched by 40.7 million people, a bigger audience than for the Grammys and Oscars this year. NBC has since found that streaming live all of the Olympic sports events online has not cut into its prime-time audience, which has been unexpectedly bigger than the 2008 Beijing Games.

“Going into the opening ceremony, we didn’t have a sense for what our ratings would be and what streaming would or wouldn’t do to our broadcasts,” said NBC Sports Chairman Mark Lazarus. “But we think we’ve learned enough and have promised to innovate and continually evolve our broadcast coverage.”

Read the full story here.

U.S. women's basketball wins 5th straight gold in a rout

The U.S. women’s basketball team celebrates winning the gold medal. (Charles Krupa/The Associated Press)

The U.S. women’s basketball team won its fifth consecutive Olympic gold medal Saturday with an 86-50 rout of hopelessly outmatched France.

With the triumph, the American women extended their unbeaten streak in Olympic competition to 41 games — a record that dates to the bronze they won at the 1992 Barcelona Games.

The Americans rolled through the 2012 London Games with overwhelming force, beating opponents by an average of 34 points.

After a somewhat rocky start in Saturday’s gold-medal game, in which the lead changed hands three times, the Americans blew open the contest with a 21-1 run in the third quarter that was spurred by Candace Parker.

France, playing the gold-medal game for the first time in Olympic history, posed only a minor inconvenience for the deep, tall and talented American squad.

The Americans were led by Parker’s 21 points.

It was the third gold medal for U.S. veterans Sue Bird, Diana Taurasi and Tamika Catchings.

It was an overpowering display of superior skill that demonstrated that women’s basketball, while increasingly popular around the world, is far from a global game.

Walcott wins men's javelin gold for Trinidad and Tobago

Keshorn Walcott competes in the javelin. (REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach)

Keshorn Walcott won Trinidad and Tobago’s first-ever gold medal in a field event today when he won the men’s javelin competition with a throw of 84.58 meters (277 feet 6 inches). Oleksandr Pyatnytsa of the Ukraine won silver, and Finland’s Antti Ruuskanen claimed bronze.

Norway’s Andreas Thorkildsen, who won gold in Athens and Beijing, finished sixth.

Serbian woman wins taekwondo gold

Milica Mandic of Serbia took the gold medal in the women’s taekwondo +67kg class with a 9-7 victory over Anne-Caroline Graffe of France.

Anastasia Baryshnikova of Russia and Maria del Rosario Espinoza of Mexico won the bronze medals.

Japan's Murata wins middleweight gold

Ryota Murata of Japan won the middleweight gold medal Saturday, 14-13, helped when Esquiva Falcao of Brazil was warned by the judges during the third round.

The round began with Murata leading, 9-8, but Falcao appeared to be winning when he drew a warning from the judges, which carries with it two points for his opponent. The third round was scored 5-5. The result drew some boos from the crowd at ExCeL South.

U.S. women's basketball erupts in third quarter, leads 63-37

Candace Parker of the U.S. drives to the basket in the women’s basketball gold medal game. (Victor R. Caivano/The Associated Press)

After a rocky first quarter, the heavily favored U.S. women’s basketball has put the gold-medal game out of reach for France, exploding for a 21-1 run in the third quarter.

With one 10-minute period remaining, the U.S. leads the Olympic gold-medal game 63-37.

U.S. co-captain Sue Bird scored back-to-back baskets to open the second half scoring for her team.

Once France pulled within 10, trailing 31-21, Coach Geno Auriemma replaced his second-half starter Tina Charles with Candace Parker, who was simply outstanding coming off the bench in the first half, leading all players with 15 points on 7-of-9 shooting while grabbing nine rebounds.

Bird hit just the American’s second third-pointer of the game to put the U.S. ahead by its biggest margin to date, 50-32.

And the chemistry that had been missing early finally kicked in, with Diana Taurasi hitting Parker for an easy lay-up and Bird firing a terrific outlet pass to Maya Moore.

The Americans’ lead was 54-32.

Norway nets women's team handball gold

Behind 10 goals by Linn Jorum Sulland, Norway won the gold medal in women’s team handball Saturday at the Basketball Arena, defeating Montenegro, 26-23.

Spain defeated Korea for the bronze medal earlier Saturday.

Boudia wins men's platform diving gold

American David Boudia wins gold in men’s platform diving. (Al Bello/Getty Images)

American David Boudia has accomplished one of the most stunning upsets of the London Games. Boudia defeated the reigning world champion Qiu Bo and home favorite Tom Daley of Great Britain to win the gold medal in the terrifying 10-meter platform diving event.

“This is so surreal right now,” said Boudia, who is the first American man to win gold in platform diving since Greg Louganis did in 1988 in Seoul. “… This competition is the most fun I ever had.”

There were Union Jacks hanging from every available railing and the shrieks for Daley were piercing. Daley, the 18-year-old electrician’s son from Plymouth, overcame almost unbearable pressure to lead going into the sixth and final dive. His last maneuver was a reverse three and a half somersault that was so good he emerged from the water clapping, to roars. Into that noise walked Boudia, the American from Purdue University.

Boudia performed an elegant back two and a half somersault with two and a half twists, that was virtually flawless. “Once I went into the water, I didn’t know where I was placed,” he said.

His score of 102.60 — his highest of the evening — was enough to put him ahead of Daley by 11.7 points. And it held up even when Qiu, the heavy favorite, performed somersaulting, twisting last plunge that earned a 100.80.

Boudia finished with 568.65 points, Qiu had 566.85 and Daley 556.95.

Boudia, who earlier won a bronze medal in the synchronized platform event, barely made it out of the qualifying round on Friday after a disastrous fourth dive. He was the last of 18 divers to advance to the semifinals. On Saturday, he relied on a relentless focus on one dive at a time.

“I actually had no idea where I was standing, whether I was in medal contention let alone gold contention,” he said.

Divers David Boudia and Tom Daley show off the medals they won in platform diving. (Thomas Coex/Getty Images)

Germany tops Netherlands for hockey gold

Max Weinhold (L) and Christopher Zeller of Germany celebrate winning gold against the Netherlands in men’s field hockey. (Lars Baron/Getty Images)

Jan Philip Rabente scored his second goal with less than five minutes remaining, giving Germany a 2-1 victory over the Netherlands and a gold medal in men’s field hockey.

Mink van der Weerden had tied the game with a penalty corner in the 53rd minute.

Azerbaijan wins two golds on the mat

Azerbaijan took two freestyle wrestling gold medals Saturday.

Toghrul Asgarov won the 60kg division, 3-0, over Besik Kudukhov of Russia. American Coleman Scott and Yogeshwar Dutt of India won the bronze medals.

In the 84kg division, Sharif Sharifov downed Jaime Yusept Espinal of Cuba. Dato Marsagishvili of Georgia and Ehsan Naser Lashgari took the bronze medals.

Artur Taymazov of Uzbekistan won the gold in the 120kg over Davit Modzmanashvili of Georgia. Bronze medals went to Komeil Ghasemi of Iran and Bilyal Makhov of Russia.

U.S. leads France 37-25 at halftime

Lindsay Whalen lays the ball up against Edwige Lawson-Wade of France in the gold medal game. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

The U.S. outscored France 17-10 in a second-half scoring spurt led by Candace Parker to take a 37-25 lead at halftime of the gold-medal women’s basketball game.

Parker scored 11 of those points—including eight consecutive for the heavily favored Americans at North Greenwich Arena.

But overall, both teams are shooting well below their tournament averages, with the U.S. hitting just 39.5 percent of its shots and France, 28 percent.

Parker, a 6-4 Tennessee product on a Connecticut-heavy roster, single-handedly kept the U.S. out front in the second 10-minute quarter.

Both teams tried pushing the pace. But while they succeeded in forcing turnovers, neither could finish shots.

After an ugly scoreless stretch, Parker hit a lay-up then drove to the basket on the next sequence for a beautiful scoop shot that put the U.S. ahead, 32-23.

With that, Parker accounted for 12 of the American’s 32 points in the game. And she wasn’t done, finishing the half with 15 points on 7 of 9 shooting and a team-high nine rebounds

Shortly before the break, U.S. point guard Sue Bird drew a second foul and sat.

The Americans are seeking a fifth consecutive Olympic gold medal.

American Boudia fighting for diving gold

In an absolutely riveting men’s 10-meter platform diving competition, Britain’s superstar diver Tom Daley took a fractional lead over American David Boudia with just one dive remaining, both of them just ahead of current world champion Qiu Bo of China. Daley and Boudia each executed stunning, tumbling somersauts into the water, which left Daley leading with 466.20 points to Boudia’s 466.05 after five rounds.

Cuban Iglesias captures welterweight gold

In the bout for the welterweight gold medal, Roniel Iglesias of Cuba defeated Denys Berinchyk of Ukraine, 22-15.

The first two rounds were close but Iglesias outscored Berinchyk, 11-6, in the third round to break away.

David Boudia leads through four rounds in platform diving

David Boudia, shown here competing in the semifinals, is in the lead after four rounds of diving in the final. (Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post)

David Boudia of Purdue University provoked gasps of disbelief in the Olympic Park Aquatic Center when he took the lead in the men’s 10-platform diving after the fourth of six rounds.

With just two dives remaining Boudia held a slim margin over the reigning world champion Qiu Bo of China, with a gorgeously executed three and a half somersault that pleased the judges. China swept gold in all 10 diving events at the most recent world championships.

U.S. women lead France, 20-15, after first quarter

The highly favored U.S. women’s basketball team struggled with poor shooting and out-of-kilter chemistry in the first quarter of its gold-medal game against France.

But with Candace Parker entering the game to provide a steadying presence inside, the U.S. has taken a 20-15 lead.

Coach Geno Auriemma fielded a starting lineup of Sue Bird, Maya Moore, Tamika Catchings, Diana Taurasi and Tina Charles.

Taurasi struck early from three-point range, but the Americans struggled to finish their shots inside.

Maya Moore entered and put the U.S. up 11-9.

France took a 13-11 lead on a three-pointer by Edwige Lawson-Wade.

The misfiring Americans, who shot 33 percent through the early going,  reclaimed the lead with a basket by Candace Parker, fed nicely by Taurasi.

And the U.S. offense started creating offense out of defense, forcing turnovers and racing down court for easy baskets.

On France’s fifth turnover, the Americans took a 20-15 lead but still left open looks wanting.

Among those in attendance are NBA Commissioner David Stern and Kobe Bryant.

Barrett claims silver in women's high jump

Brigetta Barrett competes in the high jump. (Stu Forster/Getty Images)

American Brigetta Barrett won the silver medal in the women’s high jump with a top clearance of 2.03 meters (6 feet 8 inches). She is the first American to medal in the event since Louise Ritter won the gold medal in 1988 in Seoul.

Russia’s Anna Chicherova won the gold medal with a leap of 2.05 meters (6 feet 8 3/4 inches). Chicherova, who won the bronze medal in Beijing, took the 2010 season off to have a baby, then returned to win the world title in 2011.

Svetlana Shkolina took the bronze medal; she finished at the same height as Barrett, but had more misses.

Campbell thrills Brits with bantamweight gold

“Camp-bell, Camp-bell” chanted the pro-British crowd at ExCeL South, and Luke Campbell did not disappoint, taking a 14-11 decision over Ireland’s John Joe Nevin to win the gold medal in the bantamweight division.

The pair had previously fought twice, each winning once.

Ireland hasn’t won a gold medal in men’s boxing since 1992 at Barcelona.

Jamaica sets world record in men's 4x100 relay, U.S. second

Jamaica’s Usain Bolt (right) and American Ryan Bailey head to the finish line in the men’s 4×100 relay. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)

Jamaican Usain Bolt finished his Olympics with a blistering relay leg that led to his third gold medal of the meet and a world record in the men’s 4×100-meter relay for Jamaica.

Bolt sprinted across the line in 36.94 seconds with American Ryan Bailey unable to keep up in the homestretch.

The Americans actually went under the U.S. record they had set last night with their finish in 37.04, matching the previous world record set by the Bolt-led Jamaican team in 2008.

But Trell Kimmons, 100 bronze medalist Justin Gatlin, former 100 world champion Tyson Gay and Bailey were no match for Nesta Carter, Michael Frater, 100 silver medalist Yohan Blake and Bolt.

For the first time during these Olympics, Bolt ran hard through the finish line. He received the baton about even with Bailey, but accelerated away without difficulty or strain.

Canada thought it had won the bronze, but was disqualified, leaving that honor to Trinidad and Tobago, which came home in 38.12. The Canadian team members had gotten out their flag and begun a victory lap when the result flashed on the scoreboard.

Boudia has strong start in men's platform diving

David Boudia of Purdue University was the somewhat surprising leader of the 10-meter men’s diving competition at the Aquatic Center after the first of six rounds.

The event was expected to be dominated by British star Tom Daley and the perfectionist world champion Qiu Bo of China. But Boudia was in third place after the semifinals Saturday afternoon, and then opened the evening competition with high marks on his first dive. He took the towering platform and lifted himself into a handstand, then performed a back double somersault with two and half twists before plunging into the pool.

China won seven of eight diving gold medals four years ago in Beijing, and swept all 10 gold at last year’s world championships.

Zou defends light fly gold to dismay of crowd

Zou Shiming of China of defended his gold medal in the light flyweight division with a 13-10 decision over Kaeo Pongprayoon of Thailand.

The result was met with boos of derision by the ExCeL South crowd. NBC’s announcers had Pongprayoon as the winner in a very physical fight.

Zou was called for holding in the third round, and that might have swung the decision to the Thai fighter, but then Pongprayoon was called for holding as well.

U.S. women run fastest time in 24 years in 4x400 final

Sanya Richards-Ross celebrates as she crosses the finish line well ahead of the field in the women’s 4×400 relay. (Michael Steele/Getty Images)

When Sanya Richards-Ross got the baton for the last leg of the women’s 4×400 relay final Saturday night, the question wasn’t whether the U.S. team would win the gold medal, the question was: By how much?

Richards-Ross got the baton with a giant lead over Russia and Jamaica, and she showed she hadn’t won gold in the women’s 400 earlier in the week for nothing. DeeDee Trotter, Allyson Felix, Francena McCorory and Richards-Ross secured the gold in 3 minutes, 16.87 seconds, the fourth-fastest time ever and best in 24 years.

It was also the second-fastest American time ever, falling just short of the record 3:15.51 notched by a team anchored by Florence-Griffith Joyner at the Seoul Summer Games in 1988. The world record is held by the Soviet Union, which ran a 3:15.17 in Seoul.

For Felix, it was her third gold medal of the week. She won the women’s 200, then helped the U.S. 4×100 team to a gold medal and world record Friday.

Russia won the silver medal in 3:20.23 and Jamaica took bronze with a 3:20.95.

U.S. women's basketball seeks 5th straight gold

Diana Taurasi (left) and Sue Bird will try to lead the U.S. to a fifth straight gold. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Asked how he planned to prepare for Saturday’s gold-medal game against U.S. women’s basketball team, which hasn’t lost an Olympic game in 20 years, French coach Pierre Vincent said: “I am going to party.”

Indeed, there’s a sense that the outcome is pre-ordained at North Greenwich Arena tonight.

All that remains is the coronation.

The U.S. women are riding a 40-game Olympic winning streak that dates to their bronze at Barcelona in 1992. With a victory tonight, they’d claim their fifth consecutive Olympic gold medal.

And though France has a talented point guard in Celine Dumerc, who’s averaging a tournament-high 15.1 points per game, it’s difficult to see Les Bleus toppling the Americans, whom Vincent described as “invincible.”

Maybe he’s trying to take the pressure off his French players—the first French squad to reach the last four of an Olympics basketball tournament. After toppling Russia 81-64 in Thursday’s semifinal, the French celebrated on court for nearly 15 minutes.

“We are all possessed with Olympic magic!” Vincent said.

Magic will likely be needed to deny U.S. veterans Sue Bird, Diana Taurasi and Tamika Catchings their third gold medals tonight.

The U.S. women are the tournament’s top scorers, averaging 91.3 points per game. They’ve yet to score fewer than 81 points in the tournament, while France has yet to score more than 81. The Americans also lead all teams in rebounds, blocks and steals.

Earlier Saturday, Australia defeated Russia 83-74 for bronze.

Iranian beats American wrestling for bronze

Komeil Ghasemi of Iran defeated American Tervel Ivaylov Dlagnev for a bronze medal in 120kg freestyle wrestling Saturday.

Ghasemi lost in the quarterfinals and Dlagnev in the semifinals, but got a second chance through the repechage.

Brazil overwhelms U.S., wins second volleyball gold

Fernanda Rodrigues, Jaqueline Carvalho and Fabiana Oliveira of Brazil celebrate after a point against the U.S. during the gold medal match. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

The U.S. women’s volleyball team entered the Olympics as the world’s top-ranked team and the prohibitive favorite for the gold medal. It won its first seven matches here, so heading into Saturday night’s final against Brazil, there was no reason to believe anything had changed.

But Brazil, the defending Olympic champion, stormed from a set behind and overwhelmed the Americans, taking the gold medal match 11-25, 25-17, 25-20, 25-17 — a devastating result for the U.S., which was seeking its first women’s indoor gold. Brazil also beat the Americans in the gold medal match at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

After losing the first set, Brazil never played from behind. In winning its first seven matches of the tournament, the U.S. had only dropped two sets, and never twice in the same match. But after the Americans appeared as if they would sail following a dominant first set, Brazil built lead after lead, and withstood run after run.

In the fourth set, the Americans trailed 13-9 and appeared to be on the verge of winning a point in their comeback when Jaqueline Carvalho dug out a powerful ball for Brazil, keeping a point alive. The Brazilians eventually finished it with a spike from Fernanda Rodrigues, and instead of a point toward a comeback, the United States was in a bigger hole.

U.S. Coach Hugh McCutcheon tried all kinds of lineup combinations in an attempt to put a run together, playing subs Danielle Scott-Arruda and Megan Hodge for long stretches. But the Americans could never string four points together, and therefore couldn’t catch up.

A smart tap over the net from Brazil’s Danielle Lins put the Americans in a 19-11 hole, and the huge chunks of Brazilian fans in the crowd simply grew louder.

Savinova gets gold in 800, silver for Semenya

Russia’s Mariya Savinova wins the women’s 800 meters ahead of South Africa’s Caster Semenya (middle). (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

Russian Mariya Savinova used a dominant finish to win the women’s 800-meter final with ease as South African Caster Semenya sprinted from seventh place to the silver medal over the last 200.

Savinova, the 2011 world champion and European woman athlete of 2011, finished in 1 minute, 56.19 seconds as Semenya, the 2009 world champion, crossed the line in 1:57.23. The two rivals embraced at the finish line.

Russian Ekaterina Poistogova came home in 1:57.53. American Alysia Montano Johnson finished fifth in 1:57.93.

South Korean soccer player barred from medal ceremony

Park Jong-woo, shown scoring against Britain during the quarterfinals, was barred from Saturday’s medal ceremony. (Julian Finney/Getty Images)

The IOC told South Korea to ban midfielder Park Jong-woo from Saturday’s medal ceremony after he displayed a sign with a political message during Friday’s bronze medal soccer match against Japan.

According to the Associated Press, Park is

being investigated by the IOC and FIFA for carrying the sign with a slogan supporting South Korean sovereignty of islets which are disputed territory with Japan.

“We have also requested that the (South Korea Olympic Committee) takes swift action on this issue and that the athlete not be present at today’s medal presentation ceremony,” the IOC said in a statement. “We have opened an inquiry and have asked the (South Korea Olympic Committee) for an explanation.”

Medals were presented at Wembley Stadium in London following Mexico’s 2-1 win over Brazil in the gold-medal match. Only 17 of the 18 players were on the field for South Korea during the bronze presentations, and Park was not among them.

Read the rest of the story here.

Brazil takes 2-1 lead in women's volleyball gold medal match

Jordan Larson, top, spikes the ball over Brazil’s Fernanda Rodrigues (16), Thaisa Menezes (6) and Sheilla Castro in the gold medal match, but Brazil has a 2-1 lead. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Brazil’s Sheilla Castro finished off a strong set with a spike, clinching the third set of the gold medal women’s volleyball match 25-20. Brazil now leads the United States two sets to one.

The Americans now must win the remaining two sets if it is to win the first women’s gold medal since the sport was introduced at the 1964 Olympics.

The U.S. fell behind 6-2 early in the set, and the two teams played evenly after that. Each time the Americans looked as if they would fall out of contention, they came back. Down 15-10, they rallied to 15-13. Down 19-15, they got it to 20-18. But they could never pull even with Brazil, and now face a difficult task.

Farah completes historic 5,000-10,000 double

Britain’s Mo Farah celebrates winning the men’s 5,000 meters. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

Britain’s Mo Farah became just the seventh man to achieve victories in the 5,000 and 10,000 meters in the same Olympic Games when he won a sprint to the finish in the 5,000 Saturday night.

With the crowd of 85,000 at Olympic Stadium roaring, Farah crossed the line blowing a kiss in 13 minutes, 41.66 seconds, outracing Ethiopian Dejen Gebremeskel, the reigning world bronze medalist who was clocked in 13:41.98.

Kenyan Thomas Longosiwa got the bronze in 13:42.36.

American Bernard Lagat, competing in his last Olympics at 37, finished fourth in 13:42.99 a year after winning the silver medal at the world championships. Galen Rupp, who claimed a silver behind Farah in the 10,000, got seventh in 13:45.04 and American Lopez Lomong, who led the race briefly, ended up 10th in 13:48.19.

Svoboda hangs on for modern pentathlon gold

David Svoboda of the Czech Republic celebrates winning the modern pentathlon. (Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

David Svoboda of the Czech Republic won the gold medal in the men’s modern pentathlon in the final combined event at Greenwich Park.

Svoboda had 5,928 points, 24 ahead of Zhongrong Cao of China, who won the silver, his country’s first Olympic medal in the sport. Adam Morosi of Hungary (5,836) took the bronze.

World champion Aleksander Lesun of Russia was fourth (5,764).

American Dennis Bowsher finished 32nd.

The modern pentathlon includes a fencing, swimming and riding competition. The athletes then start the final stage, the combined event, in order of their performance in the first three disciplines, with the leader going first. In the combined event, the athletes run to the shooting range, shoot at five targets, run 1000 meters, then repeat that twice more. The first to cross the finish line in the final stage wins the gold medal.

Although the format has changed, the modern pentathlon was created by Olympic founder Baron Pierre de Coubertin and was meant to re-create the rigors a soldier would have faced several centuries ago – running, fencing, swimming, riding and shooting.

Brazil bounces back to even gold medal match

Brazil’s Thaisa Menezes serves against the U.S. in the gold medal match. (Elsa/Getty Images)

Brazil, which looked to be reeling in a difficult first set, responded by dominating the United States in the second set of the gold medal match, winning the set 25-17 to even the match at one set apiece.

The Brazilians, who lost the first set 25-11, seized some much-needed momentum by getting up early in the set. Brazil’s Fernanda Rodrigues used a massive spike to put Brazil up 11-6, and the Americans looked a tad overwhelmed.

But Logan Tom finished off a key U.S. run to pull even at 12-12, and the set was back up for grabs. Brazil then reeled off six straight points to go back in command, and it was not threatened the rest of the way..

The United States had won 17 sets in a row, dating back to its second match of the tournament, when it lost the third set to Brazil. Overall, headed into the final, the Americans had won 21 sets and lost just two.

Spain women win team handball bronze

Spain’s Begona Fernandez Molinos, left, and Marta Mangue Gonzalez, right, try to block South Korea’s Gwon Han-na, center, during the women’s handball bronze medal match. (AP Photo/Petr David Josek)

Spain needed two overtimes to defeat Korea, 31-29, and claim the bronze medal in women’s team handball.

With the score tied at 29 in the second overtime, Elisabeth Pinedo Saenz scored to put Spain ahead and then with 14 seconds remaining in the period, Jessica Alonso Bernardo added a final goal.

Norway and Montenegro play for the gold later Saturday.

Coleman Scott wins 60kg wrestling bronze

Coleman Scott (left) celebrates winning the bronze medal over Japan’s Kenichi Yumoto. (Paul Sancya/The Associated Press)

Coleman Scott of the United States won a bronze medal in the 60kg freestyle wrestling, defeating Kenichi Yumoto of Japan, 3-1.

Scott advanced to the semifinals before losing to Toghrul Asgarov of Azerbaijan.

Australia women win basketball bronze

Lauren Jackson drives against Natalya Vieru of Russia during the bronze medal game. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Australia beat Russia, 83-74, to claim the bronze medal in women’s basketball. Lauren Jackson scored 25 points to lead Australia, which medalled for the fifth straight Olympics. Becky Hammon scored 19 for Russia.

The Associated Press has the full story here.

The United States meets France in the gold medal game at 4 p.m. ET.

U.S. dominates early in women's volleyball

Destinee Hooker (left), Lindsey Berg and Foluke Akinradewo (right) go up for the block against Brazil during the women’s volleyball gold medal match. (AFP PHOTO / FRANCISCO LEONG)

The U.S. women’s volleyball team, ranked No. 1 in the world, thrashed Brazil 25-11 in the first set of the gold medal match at Earls Court.

After dropping the opening point of the set, the Americans went on a six-point run behind the serve of captain Lindsey Berg. Veteran Logan Tom made several savvy plays in the run, and the United States eventually built its advantage to 11-4 on an ace by star Destinee Hooker.

Brazil called its second timeout of the set when the Americans took a 13-5 lead, and Brazilian Coach Jose Guimaraes appeared to have some harsh words for his team.

It didn’t work. The U.S. advantage grew to 22-8 on yet another errant spike from Brazil, and the flag-waving Brazilian fans grew restless. Guimaraes countered with nearly wholesale substitutions for his starters, including star Sheilla Castro.

The match is best three of five sets.

Dlagnev, Coleman get shots at wrestling bronze

Komeil Ghasemi of Iran won his repechage match with Nick Matuhin of Germany, putting him in a bronze medal match in 120kg freestyle wrestling against American Tervel Ivaylov Dlagnev. The match will begin about 2:40 p.m. ET.

Scott Coleman of the United States will face Kenichi Yumoto of Japan in the 60kg freestyle wrestling semifinals for one of the two bronze medals that are awarded in the sport.

American Jake Herbert lost his repechage match at 84kg to Ibrahim Bolukbasi of Turkey and is out of contention for a medal.

Russian sets world record in thrilling (really) race walk

Russia’s Elena Lashmanova wins the women’s 20km walk. (AFP PHOTO / MARTIN BUREAU)

Twenty-year-old Elena Lashmanova took a dramatic victory in the women’s 20-kilometer race walk on The Mall, passing countrywoman and pace setter Olga Kaniskina just yards from the finish line to become the youngest gold medalist in the event. And she did it in a world record time of 1 hour 25.02 seconds.

Kaniskina, the gold medalist from the Beijing Games and current world champion, had to settle for silver after leading for almost the entire race.

Shenjie Qieyang won the bronze.

Russia took three of the top five spots in the race. Anisya Kirdyapkina, wife of the gold medalist in the men’s 50k event earlier in the day, finished fifth.

Svoboda reclaims modern pentathlon lead

David Svoboda of the Czech Republic retook the lead by a slim margin in the modern pentathlon after the riding portion of the competition, knocking Zhongrong Cao of China back to second place.

Svoboda finished 16th, earning 1,132 points, to take a four-point lead over Cao, who had just 1,080 points. That gave Svoboda a 3,460-3,456 lead going into the final portion of the competition.

World champion Aleksander Lesun of Russia is in a tie for third (3,424).

In the riding competition, athletes begin with 1,200 points and then differing points are deducted for mistakes.

Robert Kasza (3,424) and Adam Morosi (3,416) of Hungary both scored perfect 1,200s to move up the standings. Kasza is tied with Lesun; Morosi is in fifth.

American Dennis Bowsher is 31st out of 36 competitors.

The modern pentathlon includes a fencing, swimming and riding competition. The athletes then start the final stage in order of their performance in the first three disciplines, with the leader going first. In the final stage, the athletes run to the shooting range, shoot at five targets, run 1000 meters, then repeat that twice more. The first to cross the finish line in the final stage wins the gold medal.

Although the format has changed, the modern pentathlon is an original Olympic event, meant to re-create the rigors a soldier would have faced several centuries ago – running, fencing, swimming, riding and shooting.

U.S. women's volleyball seeks first gold

Destinee Hooker hopes to make U.S. volleyball history on Saturday. (Chris O’Meara — Associated Press)

This is the 12th time women’s volleyball has been staged at the Olympics, and despite a strong feeder system from the college game, the United States is still without a gold medal. That could change Saturday at Earls Court, where the Americans — undefeated thus far in this tournament — face Brazil in the gold medal match.

Brazil beat the United States four years ago in Beijing, one of two sliver medals won by the Americans since the sport was introduced to the Olympics in 1964. But now the United States is the top-ranked team in the world (Brazil is No. 2), and the Americans beat the Brazliians during group play of this tournament.

The U.S. team is led by the powerful Destinee Hooker, who is the second-highest point scorer of the tournament. Brazil counters with Sheilla Castro, who has been the tournament’s best server.

The match starts at 1:30 p.m. ET.

The United States won silver medals in 1984 in Los Angeles and 2008 in Beijing and a bronze in 1992 in Barcelona. Brazil has its gold from Beijing to go along with bronzes from 1996 in Atlanta and 2000 in Sydney.

NBC boxing announcers booted from arena

NBC boxing announcers Bob Papa and Teddy Atlas will call the final two days of the tournament from outside ExCel Arena after a dispute with international boxing officials, the Associated Press reports.

Says the AP: “The International Boxing Association asked Papa and Atlas to move from their seats close to ringside to a broadcast booth farther away because they were ‘very disturbing’ to boxing officials, even during bouts they were not calling, said the group’s spokesman, Sebastien Gillot.”

Papa and Atlas have been critical of the boxing judges and referees during the tournament. “Everyone here should look at themselves and realize why this sport is considered a joke at this point,” Papa said while calling a bantamweight bout between Japan’s Satoshi Shimizu and Azerbaijan’s Magomed Abdulhamidov, in which Abdulhamidov hit the canvas six times but was deemed fit to continue by the referee and was declared the winner by the judges, a decision that was later overturned (the referee, from Turkmenistan, was expelled from the Games).

They will call the remaining bouts off a video feed piped into the International Broadcast Center in London.

Australian men win field hockey bronze

Australia’s Christopher Ciriello shoots during a men’s field hockey bronze medal match against Britain. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

Australia scored two goals late in the second half to defeat Britain for the bronze medal in men’s field hockey at Riverbank Arena.

Jamie Dwyer and Kieran Govers scored late for Australia.

Germany and the Netherlands play for the gold later Saturday (3 p.m. ET).

Brazil scores late, but Mexico wins soccer gold

Oribe Peralta and Mexico can celebrate the country’s first Olympic soccer gold medal. (Michael Regan — Getty Images)

Brazil’s Hulk streaked down the field in the first minute of stoppage time and scored his team’s first goal of its Olympic title game against Mexico, but it wasn’t enough as Mexico earned a 2-1 victory and the men’s soccer gold medal, the country’s first.

Brazil, perhaps the world’s preeminent soccer power, still has never won a gold medal in men’s soccer.

Oribe Peralta scored two goals to lead Mexico. His first came just 28 seconds into the game, the earliest score ever in an Olympic final. While Brazil struggled to find the net, Peralta struck again, scoring on a header in the 75th minute.

Brazil had a chance to tie the score after Hulk’s goal, but a desperate header flew above the crossbar in the final minute.

Spain wins sailing match-race gold

Spain defeated Australia in the final of the women’s Elliott 6m to win gold in the final sailing race at Weymouth and Portland.

Tamara Echegoyen Dominguez, Sofia Toro Prieto Puga and Angela Pumariega Menendez took the fifth and decisive match race.

The Australian trio of Olivia Price, Nina Curtis and Lucinda Whitty took the silver.

The Elliott is a match-race competition, so boats race against each other in pairs, starting with a round-robin competition and whittling the field to the final four boats. The first boat to take three races in a match wins.

Earlier Saturday, Finland defeated Russia, 3-1, for the bronze.

Mexico adds to lead in soccer final

Oribe Peralta, doing work for Mexico. (Michael Regan — Getty Images)

In the 75th minute of the Olympic men’s soccer final, Oribe Peralta scored his second goal of the game on a sharp header, giving Mexico a 2-0 lead over Brazil.

Time is running out for the talented Brazilian men’s soccer team, and it’s showing few signs of mounting a comeback. In the second half, Mexico had at least a couple of opportunities to add to that lead.

In the 63rd minute, Mexico stole the ball and charged toward the goal, but Marco Fabian’s beautifully executed bicycle kick bounced high off the crossbar. Five minutes later, Mexico missed another scoring opportunity when Peralta’s apparent goal was called off because of an offsides call.

VIDEO: Guor Marial runs under the Olympic flag

As The Post’s Rick Maese reported, Guor Marial will run Sunday’s marathon under the Olympic flag. He is unaffiliated with any nation because South Sudan is not yet recognized as an Olympic nation.

Syrian hurdler expelled for doping

The IOC has expelled Syrian hurdler Ghfran Almouhamad from the Olymipcs after she tested positive for the banned stimulant methylhexaneamine on Aug. 3.

Almouhamad finished eighth and last in her first-round 400-meter heat on Aug. 5.

Russians finish 1-2 in rhythmic all-around

Evgeniya Kanaeva defended her rhythmic gymnastics gold medal. (Julie Jacobson — Associated Press)

Evgeniya Kanaeva defended her gold medal in the individual all-around final in rhythmic gymnastics, winning by more than two points over teammate Daria Dmitrieva at Wembley Arena.

Liubou Charkashyna of Belarus won the bronze with 111.700 points.

The final of the team competition is Sunday.

Mexico leads Brazil at halftime of soccer final

Mexico goalkeeper Jose Corona jumps for the ball. (Daniel Garcia — AFP/Getty Images)

Heavily favored to win the Olympic tournament, the Brazilian men’s soccer team has struggled to find a rhythm in the first half against Mexico at Wembley Stadium.

The game’s lone goal came from Mexico’s Oribe Peralta in the first 30 seconds. It was the lone shot on goal in the opening half for Mexico, but it gave the Mexican team momentum throughout.

Hampered by sloppy passing, Brazil struggled to mount many serious threats on the goal. The Brazilians were credited with eight shots, including three shots on goal, but they’ll enter the second half facing a deficit.

Coleman loses in wrestling semifinals

Scott Coleman of the United States fell to Toghrul Asgarov of Azerbaijan in the 60kg freestyle wrestling semifinals. Coleman will now face either Tim Schleicher of Germany or Kenichi Yumoto of Japan for one of the two bronze medals that are awarded in freestyle wrestling.

The repechage bouts begin at 12:45 p.m.

Herbert falls in freestyle wrestling quarterfinals

Jake Herbert is upended by Sharif Sharifov of Azerbaijan. (Paul Sancya — Associated Press)

Jake Herbert of the United States lost to Sharif Sharifov of Azerbaijan in the 84kg freestyle wrestling quarterfinals.

Sharifov defeated Ehsan Naser Lashgari of Iran to advance to the gold medal match, meaning Herbert will compete for one of two bronze medals in the repechage. He will face Ibrahim Bolukbasi of Turkey in the repechage opener at approximately 12:45 p.m. The winner will take on Lashgari for one of the two bronze medals.

Mexico takes early soccer lead over Brazil

Oribe Peralta (No. 9) and Mexico celebrate his ultra-quick goal against Brazil. (Michael Regan — Getty Images)

It took less than 30 seconds in the Olympic men’s soccer goal medal match for Brazil to make a costly mistake and for Mexico to pounce.

Mexico stole Brazil’s badly played cross-field pass and Oribe Peralta was able to pounce, charging toward the goal and scoring easily. Only 28 seconds had passed, making it one of the quickest scores ever in an Olympic final.

Dlagnev falls in freestyle wrestling semifinals

Tervel Dlagnev of the United States lost to Artur Taymazov of Belarus, a two-time Olympic champion, in the 120kg freestyle wrestling semifinals. He will now battle for one of two bronze medals awarded. Those matches begin at 12:45 p.m.

Dlagnev will face the winner of the repechage match between Nick Matuhin of Germany and Komeil Ghasemi of Iran for a bronze medal.

Brazil meets Mexico for men's soccer gold

Brazil’s soccer team has captured just about every tournament, honor and trophy on the planet — except for an Olympic title. Saturday afternoon at Wembley Stadium, the Brazilians will try to rectify that. They’ll face Mexico, which is also trying for its first Olympic gold.

Mexico topped Brazil, 2-0, when the teams last met in a June friendly staged in Dallas, but Brazil entered this tournament as a heavy favorite.

Brazil is led by Neymar, a 20-year-old sensation who’s considered the future of Brazilian soccer. He has three goals in tournament play. His teammate, Leandro Damiao, leads all Olympic players with six goals.

Dlagnev, Scott advance to wrestling semifinals

Tervel Dlagnev stopped defending world champion Aleksei Shemarov of Belarus. (Paul Sancya — Associated Press)

Tervel Dlagnev of the United States scored an upset in the freestyle wrestling 120kg quarterfinals, defeating Aleksei Shemarov of Belarus, the defending world champion at that weight class.

Dlagnev will face Artur Taymazov of Uzbekistan, the gold medalist in 2004 and 2008 and a silver medalist in 2000, in the semifinals at 10:06 a.m., with a spot in the gold medal match on the line.

In the 60kg quarterfinals, Coleman Scott of the United States defeated Malkhaz Zaruka of Georgia. He will face Toghrul Asgarov of Azerbaijan, the 2012 European champion, in the semifinals at approximately 10:15 a.m.

Japan wins volleyball bronze

South Korea’s players came up short in the bronze medal match. (Dave Martin — Associated Press)

Japan defeated South Korea, 25-22, 26-24, 25-21, to take the bronze medal in women’s volleyball Saturday at Earls Court.

The United States plays Brazil for the gold medal later Saturday (1:30 p.m. ET).

Cao moves into modern pentathlon lead

Cao Zhongrong of China finished third in the swimming portion of the modern pentathlon and took the overall lead after two events.

David Svoboda of the Czech Republic, who had led after the first round, was 17th in the swimming and fell to second overall.

Amro el Geziry of Egypt won the event, a 200-meter swim at the Aquatics Centre, and set an Olympic record by earning 1,412 points.

World champion Aleksander Lesun of Russia is third overall and countryman Andrei Moiseev is fourth.

El Geziry’s performance bumped him up to fifth overall.

American Dennis Bowsher moved up to 30th out of 36 competitors.

In the first round, epee fencing, Svoboda equaled an Olympic record with 1,024 points.

The athletes head next to Greenwich Park for the riding portion of the competition (10:20 a.m. ET), in which they draw horses at random and take them over a jumping course. They start with 1,200 points and lose differing amounts for each mistake.

Gould takes bronze in mountain biking

The mountain bikers cycle through the course. (Frank Franklin II — Associated Press)

American Georgia Gould took the bronze medal in the women’s mountain bike race, missing the silver by 0.06 of a second in her best international finish.

France’s Julie Bresset won the gold medal and Sabine Spitz of Germany took silver.

Gould moved past Spitz into second for part of the race but could not hold off the gold medalist from Beijing. Spitz, 40, also won bronze in Athens and finished ninth in Sydney.

As she neared the finish line, Bresset, 23, smiled and waved at the crowd, knowing she had clinched the gold medal in 1 hour 30.52 seconds. Spitz was 1:02 behind her.

Gould was born in Baltimore and received her degree in psychology from the University of Montana. She also trained as a chef, graduating from the Culinary School of the Rockies in Boulder. She now lives and trains in Fort Collins, Colo.

Gould was eighth in Beijing and 20th at last year’s world championships.

American Lea Davison finished 11th.

Competitors rode six laps around the course at Hadleigh Farm, located in the Essex countryside on land owned by the Salvation Army.

U.S. wrestlers win openers

Tervel Dlagnev, in red, tries to subdue Eldesoky Shaban of Egypt. (Paul Sancya — Associated Press)

Tervel Dlagnev of the United States defeated Eldesoky Shaban of Egypt in the 120kg men’s freestyle wrestling round of 16.

Dlagnev won the bronze medal at the 2009 world championships and is seen as a medal contender at these Games. He will face Aleksei Shemarov of Belarus, the 2011 world champion, in the quarterfinals at 9:30 a.m.

In the 60kg round of 16, Coleman Scott of the United States defeated Lee Seungchul of South Korea. Scott will face Malkhaz Zarkua of Georgia in the quarterfinals at 9:39 a.m.

In the 84kg round of 16, Jake Herbert of the United States defeated Humberto Daniel Arencibia Martinez of Cuba.

Saturday's gold medal schedule

A look at the gold medals that will be handed out on Saturday.

7:30 a.m.: Cycling, women’s mountain bike race.

10 a.m.: Men’s soccer, Brazil vs. Mexico.

10:10 a.m.: Rhythmic gymnastics, final rotation.

Noon: Track and field, women’s 20km race walk.

1:30 p.m.: Women’s volleyball, United States vs. Brazil.

1:45 p.m.: Modern pentathlon, men’s combined event.

1:46 p.m.: Men’s freestyle wrestling, 60kg final (1:46 p.m.), 84kg final (2:21 p.m.), 120kg final (2:56 p.m.).

2 p.m.: Track and field, women’s high jump (2 p.m.), men’s javelin (2:20 p.m.), men’s 5,000 meters (2:30 p.m.), women’s 800 meters (3 p.m.), women’s 4×400 relay (3:25 p.m.), men’s 4×100 relay (4 p.m.).

3 p.m.: Men’s field hockey, Germany vs. Netherlands.

3:30 p.m.: Men’s boxing, light flyweight (3:30 p.m.), bantamweight (3:45 p.m.), light welterweight (4:15 p.m.), middleweight (4:45 p.m.), heavyweight (5:15 p.m.).

3:30 p.m.: Diving, men’s 10-meter platform finals.

3:30 p.m.: Women’s handball, Norway vs. Montenegro.

4 p.m.: Women’s basketball, United States vs. France.

5:15 p.m.: Taekwondo, women’s 67kg final (5:15 p.m.), men’s 80kg final (5:30 p.m.).

Russian wins race walk in Olympic-record time

Russia’s Sergey Kirdyapkin exults after winning the men’s race walk. (Emilio Morenatti — Associated Press)

Sergey Kirdyapkin of Russia won the country’s first gold in the men’s 50-kilometer race walk since the breakup of the Soviet Union, finishing in an Olympic-record time of 3 hours 35.59 seconds.

Jared Tallent of Australia, a silver medalist four years ago in Beijing, repeated that performance, finishing in 3:36.53, also under the Olympic record of 3:37.09.

Si Tianfeng of China was grinding by the final lap but determined to finish with a medal after having such a large lead for part of the race. Si, who was 17th four years ago in Beijing, gave China its first medal in this event.

Kirdyapkin, a police officer when he’s not competing, won the world race walking championship at this distance this year and won this event at the world track and field championships a year ago. Four years ago in Beijing, he was unable to finish this event.

Robert Heffernan of Ireland, who made a late charge on the leaders, outsprinted – so to speak – Igor Erochkin at the line to finish fourth, to the delight of the many Irish fans in the crowd that lined the course on the Mall.

Russian overtakes lead in race walk

Si Tianfeng of China built a large lead in the men’s 50-kilometer race walk, then came the Russians, three of them.

Only Sergey Kirdyapkin managed to pass Si and stay in front, leading after 40 kilometers. Russians Sergey Bakulin and Igor Erohkin fell back with Si, along with Jared Tallent of Australia.

By the 45-kilometer point, Si and Tallent had passed the Russians and were side by side in second place.

Czech leads after one round of pentathlon

China’s Cao Zhongrong, left, battles David Svoboda of the Czech Republic in the fencing portion of the modern pentathlon. (Adek Berry — AFP/Getty Images)

David Svoboda of the Czech Republic equaled an Olympic record by scoring 1,024 in the first round of the modern pentathlon Saturday at the Copper Box.

World champion Aleksander Lesun of Russia and Zhongrong Cao of China were tied for second with 1,000 points.

The first round of the pentathlon is epee fencing.

American Dennis Bowsher was last among 36 competitors.

The athletes head next to the Aquatics Centre, where they will be awarded points based on their times in the 200-meter freestyle. They’ll swim between the semifinals and finals of the men’s platform diving.

The modern pentathlon includes a fencing, swimming and riding competition. The athletes then start the final stage in order of their performance in the first three disciplines, with the leader going first. In the final stage, the athletes run to the shooting range, shoot at five targets, run 1000 meters, then repeat that twice more. The first to cross the finish line in the final stage wins the gold medal.

Although the format has changed, the modern pentathlon is an original Olympic event, meant to re-create the rigors a soldier would have faced several centuries ago – running, fencing, swimming, riding and shooting.

Boudia third, Daley fourth in diving semifinals

David Boudia is in good shape after the 10m platform semifinals. (Michael Dalder — Reuters)

Qiu Bo and Yue Lin staged a battle for the top spot in the semifinals of the men’s platform Saturday at the Aquatics Centre. That was hardly surprising.

But American David Boudia laid claim to the third spot, and that was. Boudia won a bronze here in the synchronized event but struggled in Friday’s preliminaries and earned the 18th and final spot in the semifinals.

Saturday, he was back to his old self, posting scores that only the Chinese could beat. His final dive of the morning, a back 2½ somersault with 2½ twists, drew a 93.60. Then Boudia watched as the rest of the field scrambled for spots in the final 12 who would dive later in the day for the medals (3:30 p.m. ET).

Thomas Daley, Britain’s favorite son, inched his way up the leader board, just as he did Friday. He was seventh after four dives, then fourth after his fifth five scored a 91.80. An 89.10 on his final dive guaranteed him fourth place and a qualifying spot before half the field had event climbed the ladder to the platform.

Nicholas McCrory, who with Boudia won bronze in the synchronized event, dived consistently, hitting 90 on his final dived, and finished seventh.

Yue held a narrow lead after four dives — .60 points – but in the fifth round, he demonstrated the inconsistency that could cost him the gold, scoring just 75.60. Qiu responded with a 94.35, and the tables had turned.

Yue and Qiu were the final two divers. Lin posted a 93.60 to push his overall score to 541.80. Qiu answered with a 97.20 to increase his lead to 563.55.

McKeever wins kayak gold on final day at Eton Dorney

Ed McKeever celebrates one final gold for Britain. (Chris Carlson — Associated Press)

Ed McKeever won a final gold for the host country on the final day of racing at Eton Dorney, winning the kayak single 200m.

Saul Craviotto Rivera won the silver and Mark de Jonge of Canada took the bronze.

Liam Heath and Jon Schofield added to the British haul with a bronze in the men’s kayak four. Yury Postrigay and Alexander Dyachenko of Russia won the silver and Raman Piatrushenka and Vadzim Makhneu of Belarus won the bronze.

Ukraine, which had great success at the venue, took two more medals Saturday, a gold in the canoe single 200m and silver in the lone women’s race.

Yuri Cheban won the gold in the single canoe. Jevgeni Shuklin of Lithuania took silver and Russian Ivan Shtyl the bronze.

In the women’s kayak single 200m, Inna Osypenko-Radomska won silver for Ukraine, second to Lisa Carrington of New Zealand. Natasa Douchev-Janics took bronze for Hungary.

Tight race walk at midway point

Britain’s Nathan Deakes and Sergey Bakulin of Russia were tied for the lead at the timed halfway point of the men’s 50-meter race walk.

There’s a long way to go.

By Lindsay Applebaum August 11, 2012

By Lindsay Applebaum August 12, 2012