Olympics 2012: Team USA Wins Gold in Women’s Gymnastics Final; Michael Phelps Wins Historic 19th Medal
The five-member squad, comprised of Gabrielle Douglas, McKayla Maroney, Aly Raisman, Kyla Ross and Jordyn Wieber, dominated the competition, finishing with a stunning 183.596 points.
That number was well ahead of Russia, whose team stumbled on their final event, the Floor Exercise, to finish in second place, with 178.530 points.
Rounding out the podium: Romania, which edged out defending champions China for the Bronze.
This marks the first time the United States — which placed first at the World Championships in 2011 — has won the team competition since the 1996 Games in Atlanta, when 20 Kerri Strug clinched the Gold with a now-historic vault.
It was also a complete turnaround from yesterday’s performance by the men’s team, who fell numerous times and wound up finishing a disappointing fifth.
The United States’ victory today is the second overall Gold for the Red, White and Blue in women’s the team finals. They placed Silver at the 2008 Olympics, in Beijing.
Meanwhile, swimmer Michael Phelps made history on Tuesday by winning his 19th Olympic medal, a fitting Gold, in the 800-meter freestyle relay. By doing so, he officially became the most-decorated Olympian in history, surpassing the previous record set by Russian gymnast Larisa Latynina.
Earlier Tuesday, Phelps tied Latynina’s record in the 200-meter butterfly, where he finished in second place to Chad le Clos of South Africa. Unfortunately, the medal was bittersweet for Phelps, as it prevented him from becoming the first swimmer to win three-consecutive Gold medals in a single event.