USA Wins Gold In Record Fashion
Clearly the favorites heading into Rio for the Olympic games, the United States gymnastics team dominated in the qualifying round, defeating China by ten points. With the team finals today, all the qualifying scores went out the window. Still, it appeared that Team USA would have to stumble considerably not to bring home gold for the second straight time in the Olympics.
Team USA showed their dominance early, as Laurie Hernandez nailed her opening vault. Aly Raisman followed with a nearly perfect vault, then Simone Biles topped that with a vault that scored 15.933, the best of the night. Just like that, Team USA was out in front and never looked back.
Madison Kocian and Gabby Douglas were more than solid on the uneven bars, earning two of the top scores in the event. The dominance continued on the balance beam, as Biles, Hernandez and Raisman each scored over 15. Team USA put it away with the floor exercises, as Biles and Raisman (world champion and reigning Olympic champion) executed flawlessly, while Hernandez showed at age 16 that US Women’s Gymnastics are in capable hands moving forward.
The victory by the United States was by an unprecedented 8.209 points, which passed the Fierce Five’s 5.066 point win in London in 2012. Russia took home the silver, while China won the bronze. Just missing out of the medals were Japan, who finished fourth, and Great Britain who finished fifth. Rounding out the competition was Germany, Netherlands and host country Brazil.
The all-around individual takes place on Thursday, while finals in the vault and bar are on August 14, beam on August 15 and floor finals on August 16.