Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

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2012 Olympics

August 9, 2012

U.S. captures gold in track, volleyball

LONDON — Four things to know about Wednesday, Day 12 of the London Olympics:

—Allyson Felix leads American surge at track.

—May-Treanor, Walsh take all-American final in beach volleyball.

—Attar makes Olympic track debut for Saudi women.

—Semenya off to solid Olympic start three years after gender test.

Allyson Felix grinned as she waited for the official results to pop up on the scoreboard. She knew what was coming, and she was going to enjoy this moment.

Olympic champion, at last.

The American sprinter won the 200 meters at the London Games on Wednesday, sparking a strong performance for the United States at Olympic Stadium.

Felix clocked 21.88 seconds to top Jamaica's Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, who won the 100 four nights earlier. American Carmelita Jeter added bronze to go with her silver in the 100 meters.

Usain Bolt and Jamaican teammate Yohan Blake each won their 200 semifinal heats. Bolt is trying to become the first man with two Olympic golds in the 200 meters.

The United States also occupied a couple of spots on the podium at Horse Guards Parade, with Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh Jennings becoming the first three-time gold medalists in Olympic beach volleyball history.

The duo beat Jennifer Kessy and April Ross 21-16, 21-16 in the all-American final, extending their Olympic winning streak to 21 matches.

There was more history at Olympic Stadium during the day. The crowd roared when Sarah Attar was introduced during the morning session, and she responded with a wave, a wide smile and a bit of a chuckle.

This was one extraordinary 800-meter heat.

Covered from head to toe, except for her smiling face poking out from her headscarf, Attar became the first woman from Saudi Arabia to compete in track and field at the Olympics when she clocked 2 minutes, 44.95 seconds in her preliminary race.

The 19-year-old Attar finished last in her heat. To her, the time wasn't the point.

•The U.S. men's volleyball team got off to a strong start at the London Olympics, but it's headed home without a medal. The defending Olympic champions lost 28-26, 25-20, 25-20 to Italy in the quarterfinals.

•The U.S. was shut out of Olympic sailing medals for the first time since 1936 when women's match racing skipper Anna Tunnicliffe was beaten in the quarterfinals by Finland.

•Middleweight Claressa Shields beat Kazakhstan's Marina Volnova in the semifinals of the first Olympic women's tournament, earning a spot in the title bout against Russia's Nadezda Torlopova.

Shields is the last American boxer left in London after flyweight Marlen Esparza lost 10-8 to Chinese world champion Ren Cancan an hour earlier. Ren will fight Britain's Nicola Adams for the flyweight title.

•The U.S. men's team was eliminated with an 8-2 quarterfinal loss to unbeaten Croatia.

 

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2012 Olympics