Another winning day for America’s teams, plus Usain Bolt begins difficult road toward historic triple-triple
More on the unfortunate circumstances involving swimmer Ryan Lochte and three other swimmers later in this blog.
Starting the fun on Sunday with basketball…
The women cruised over China 105-62, as another record was set with Team USA dishing out 40 assists on 46 made baskets. That is almost unheard of on any level of basketball competition.
Tina Charles and Brittney Griner split scoring honors with 18 points apiece. Griner also managed to add 13 rebounds, three assists and one blocked shot.
Diana Taurasi, who has proven once again to be one of the best women’s basketball players of all-time in the tournament, scored a pair of three-point baskets. She is within six treys of tying the women’s Olympic record for most three-pointers in a single tournament.
For the men, another sloppy finish and a close-shave victory 100-97 over France. Tony Parker sat out this game with an injury, but the French could meet up again in the semifinal round with Dream Team VII if both teams win their quarterfinal matches on Wednesday.
Both versions of women’s volleyball shine once again
The American women’s indoor team has never won gold in the Olympics. But they took one big step on Sunday afternoon, winning in four impressive sets over a gutsy China team. They clinched the top spot in Pool A and will play Japan on Tuesday in the quarterfinals.
Kelsey Robinson and captain Christa Dietzen played with extra energy in those final three sets and turned a sloppy beginning with plenty of unforced errors into a much happier ending.
A similar ending occurred on famed Copacabana Beach later that night as Kerri Walsh-Jennings and April Ross outdistanced a pair from Australia 21-16 and 21-12 to advance to the semifinals with four members of the men’s basketball team lending their support in the stands. Jimmy Butler, DeAndre Jordan, Draymond Green, and new Golden State Warriors teammate Kevin Durant joined the likes of Leslie Jones of the remake from Ghostbusters.
In an interview with Kathryn Tappen, he had this to say regarding a comment said by 28 time record holding medalist Michael Phelps on him taking six months to learn how to play handball and KD had this to say about him trying to learn how to play beach volleyball:
“It would probably take me about six months.”
The match lasted about 41 minutes and Kerri Walsh-Jennings is only two wins away from making history in joining Lisa Leslie as the only four time Olympians to win gold in a team sport.
And yes, Usain Bolt won the 100 meter dash in 9.80 seconds–nowhere near his world record time but .009 better than Team USA’s Justin Gatlin, who actually stayed stride for stride with Bolt during the first 50 meters. Bolt was simply too much in the final 50 meters. The 200 meter race and the 4 x 100 are all that stands between him acheiving the first ever triple-triple in Olympic history (three golds in three straight Olympiads).
A very close call involving four American male swimmers took place on Saturday night in Rio. According to NBC News and Access Hollywood on Sunday morning, Ryan Lochte along with Jack Conger, Jimmy Faegen, and Gunnar Bentz were robbed at gunpoint in a taxi while en route from the French House back to the Olympic Village.
The car was sideswiped and according to United States Olympic Committee spokesperson Patrick Sandusky had this to say regarding the incident:
“According to four members of the U.S. Olympic Swimming Team (Gunnar Bentz, Jack Conger, Jimmy Feigen and Ryan Lochte), they left France House early Sunday morning in a taxi headed for the Olympic Village. Their taxi was stopped by individuals posing as armed police officers who demanded the athletes’ money and other personal belongings. All four athletes are safe and cooperating with authorities.”
Ryan Lochte spoke about the incident to Billy Bush, of which you can see the full interview Monday morning on the Today show.