Olympic Weekend Wrap-Up: April 2, 2012
Olympic swimmers Michael Phelps and Jessica Hardy set meet records with the fastest times in the world this year while winning events Saturday at the Indianapolis Grand Prix.
Phelps won the 200-meter individual medley by nearly three seconds in 1:56.32. Hardy won by more than two seconds in the 100 breaststroke with a time of 1:06.12.
Those were among five records set on the third and final night of the meet. U.S. national team members Nick Thoman (men’s 100 backstroke) and Caitlin Leverenz (women’s 200 IM) set records along with Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu (women’s 200 butterfly).
Phelps added to his lead in each 50-meter leg of the IM. He also won two other golds at the meet, taking the 100 butterfly Thursday then setting a meet record with his 400 IM win Friday.
“I’m very happy,” Phelps said of his 200 IM. “It’s a half-second faster than I was last year and I was shaved at this point last year, so I’m getting closer to the time that I want. It’s two seconds off the time I went shaved and rested last year (at the FINA World Championships), so for right now, I’m very pleased.”
Missy Franklin won the 200 backstroke Friday and 100 backstroke Saturday.
Nathan Adrian set his second record of the meet Friday when he took the 50 freestyle by one hundredth of a second over George Bovell in 21.88. Bovell had set the record in preliminaries at 22.15.
Among the other record efforts Friday were: Allison Schmitt in the women’s 200 freestyle, Madison Kennedy in the women’s 50 freestyle and Germany’s Yannick Lebherz in the men’s 200 backstroke.
Olympic gold medalist Julia Mancuso won the women’s giant slalom Saturday at the Nature Valley U.S. Alpine Championships in Winter Park, Colo. for her record 15th national title. Mancuso has won four straight and six total national titles in the giant slalom along with four super G, four combined and one downhill title.
Mancuso had won her latest super G title Friday.
Robby Kelley won the giant slalom Sunday for his first national title. Robert Cone was the top junior in the giant slalom and slalom.
“Once I saw number one on the board, I was so excited I couldn’t really control my emotions,” Kelley said.
Tommy Ford won his eighth national title in the combined, a paper tile combining the fastest times in slalom and super G. Kiley Staples won the women’s title for her first career national championship.
Elsewhere, Kris Freeman won his 15th career national cross country title by winning the 50k mass start in Craftsbury, Vt.
Kikkan Randall won her 17th national title with a victory in the women’s 30k.
U.S. champion Ashley Wagner finished fourth among women at the ISU World Championships in Nice, France.
Wagner had the third-best free skate score to post the best finish by a U.S. woman since Kimmie Meissner also finished fourth in 2007.
Jeremy Abbott finished in eighth place among men.
Caydee Denney and John Coughlin were seventh in pairs while Mary Beth Marley and Rockne Brubaker were 10th.
The United States women won the senior and junior titles at the Jesolo Trophy in Italy. The competition included the United States, Italy and Russia.
Kyla Ross won the senior all-around while Lexie Priessman won the junior all-around title. The United States also won a combined 17 individual events in seniors and juniors combined.
Rebecca Bross, Brianna Brown, Brenna Dowell, Sarah Finnegan, McKayla Maroney, Elizabeth Price, Alexandra Raisman, Mykayla Skinner and Ross made up the senior team. Raisman and Finnegan finished second and third in all-around behind Ross. Ross also won the uneven bars and beam.
Elsewhere, Steven Gluckstein and Savannah Vinsant won the senior trampoline competitions at the T&T Elite Challenge Saturday night in Tulsa, Okla.
The event was the first of three Olympic qualifying events for trampoline.
Bobsled pilots Nick Cunningham and Cory Butner swept the America’s Cup men’s titles after collecting six medals in the finale at Lake Placid, N.Y. this weekend.
Cunningham was named the overall points leader and two-man bobsled champion while Butner piloted the winning four-man team.
In all, the United States earned 10 medals at the America’s Cup to finish the season with 44 podium finishes, 27 of which were piloted by Cunningham or Butner.
“The most rewarding thing about this season for me was watching these two pilots develop for six months of their careers,” U.S. bobsled coach Mike Dionne said.
Cunningham and first-year slider Kevin Ives finished third in the first two-man race Friday then won Saturday. Butner won both four-man events with the crew of Laszlo Vandracsek, Adam Clark and Nic Taylor.
Kyle Tress, Greg West and Lauren Salter combined for four medals in the skeleton races Friday.
Tress won both men’s titles, earning enough points to secure a third spot for the U.S. men on next season’s World Cup tour. West finished second for his first-ever international medal. Salter finished third in the second of the two women’s races.
• Taylor Lipsett had three goals and an assist to lead the United States to a 5-1 victory over Korea in the championship game of the IPC Sledge Hockey World Championships Sunday in Hamar, Norway. Josh Pauls scored the only goal of the first period. Alexi Salamone finished with a goal and an assist. Goaltender Steve Cash, defenseman Taylor Chace and forward Alexi Salamone were named to the all-tournament team.
• Kristin Armstrong finished second in Sunday’s Tour of Flanders cycling event in Belgium.
• Connor Fields won the elite men’s main while David Herman and Amanda Geving each posted third-place finishes Saturday at the UCI BMX Supercross World Cup in Chula Vista, Calif. Fields also won the men’s time trial superfinal Friday. Corben Sharrah was third while Arielle Martin and Amanda Carr finished 2-3 in the women’s time trial. More than 40 amateur BMX national titles were also awarded in Chula Vista as part of the weekend events.
• Courtney Mathewson had five goals and Betsey Armstrong made 12 saves Sunday when the U.S. women’s water polo team finished the Kirishi Cup with its third straight victory, 8-7, over host Russia. The United States also beat the Netherlands 6-3 on Friday and China 10-3 on Saturday to finish the women’s water polo event with a 4-1 record.
• Staff Sgt. Ryan Hadden won the men’s trap Saturday after Corey Cogdell, a 2008 Olympic medalist, took the women’s trap Friday at the ISSF World Cup Tucson. The United States led in medals at the event, finishing with three golds and two bronzes.
• Alex Morgan scored with 17 minutes remaining to lift the U.S. women’s soccer team to a 1-1 tie with host Japan in the Kirin Challenge Cup. The trip also includes a game Tuesday against Brazil.
• Sara Taffel, in women’s foil, and Andrew Mackiewicz, in men’s saber, earned silver medals in their Cadet World Championships fencing debuts Saturday in Moscow.
• Indigo Monk and Brandon Davis took silver and bronze in the slopestyle Saturday at the FIS Snowboarding Junior World Championships in Sierra Nevada, Spain.
• Isaiah Varnona, an 18-year-old, and Lee Wildes, a 19-year-old, were among the Greco-Roman champions at the final U.S. Olympic Trials Sunday in Cedar Falls, Iowa. Fourteen Greco-Roman wrestlers and eight in women’s freestyle earned spots at the Olympic Trials April 21-22 in Iowa City. The top two finishers, who had not previously qualified, earned spots.
• Suzanne Stettinius won the silver medal and Samantha Achterberg finished fourth Saturday at the NORCECA Modern Pentathlon Championships in Guatemala.
• The United States men started 0-3 with losses Saturday and Sunday in the World Curling Championships, which run through April 8 in Basel, Switzerland.