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Olympics roundup: Banner day for Great Britain, Blade Runner

Published: Saturday, Aug. 4 2012 10:02 p.m. MDT

USA's Lebron James, left, and USA's Andre Iguodala, right, celebrate during a preliminary men's basketball game against Lithuania at the 2012 Summer Olympics, Saturday, Aug. 4, 2012, in London. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

Associated Press

Britain's banner day stretched from Dorney Lake to Olympic Stadium, which opened with Oscar Pistorius' debut and ended with a crowd-pleasing performance by the home team.

How to describe the action in track and field? The Blade Runner and Britannia. Jamaica also got a big victory when Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce raced to another gold in the women's 100 meters, keeping the cherished sprinting title in the Caribbean country.

Pistorius, a double-amputee who runs on carbon-fiber blades, finished second in his 400-meter heat to earn a berth in the semifinals Sunday night. He posted a season-best time of 45.44 seconds.

"I've worked for six years ... to get my chance," said the South African, who became the first amputee to compete on the track at an Olympics. "I found myself smiling in the starting block. Which is very rare in the 400 meters."

Team GB sent a charge through the capacity crowd with a quick series of victories, producing repeated roars that could be heard throughout Olympic Park.

The victors: Jessica Ennis in heptathlon; Greg Rutherford in men's long jump; and Mo Farah in the men's 10,000 meters. Three gold medals in about one hour for the host country — and the capper to a big British surge.

The hosts pulled in two more golds on the final day of the Olympic regatta, and another in women's pursuit at the London Velodrome.

BEACH VOLLEYBALL: Two-time gold medalists Kerri Walsh Jennings and Misty May-Treanor beat the Netherlands in straight sets to advance to the tournament quarterfinals. The Americans topped Marleen van Iersel and Sanne Keizer 21-13, 21-12.

TRIATHLON: Nicola Spirig of Switzerland won the gold medal in a photo finish with a Swedish challenger at the Olympic triathlon. The end of the race was so close that both women celebrated after crossing the line. Spirig held off Lisa Norden to claim gold in 1 hour, 59.48 seconds. The runners were given the same time, and Spirig was declared the winner after a few minutes of uncertainty.

VOLLEYBALL: The U.S. men's team blew a two-set lead and lost to Russia in five, snapping an 11-match winning streak in Olympic play. Maxim Mikhaylov scored 27 points for No. 2 Russia in the 27-29, 19-25, 26-24, 25-16, 15-8 victory. Sergey Tetyukhin spiked for match point.

BOXING: The British boxing team is on a remarkable roll at its home Olympics, and that's just one reason the Indian team is furious. Second-seeded light welterweight Tom Stalker beat India's Manoj Kumar 20-16 for the 10th British win in 11 fights in London, moving six boxers to the brink of medal qualification. Although Stalker and Kumar appeared to be evenly matched, Kumar and his coaching staff criticized the judges and the tournament after the fifth loss for a seven-man team that arrived in London hoping to add to its single Olympic boxing medal.

DIVING: China's Wu Mingxia cruised into the 3-meter springboard final after qualifying in the top spot during the Olympic semifinals. Wu, who is seeking her record-tying sixth Olympic diving medal, totaled 394.400 points in the five rounds, giving her a lead of 32.30 points over second-place Tania Cagnotto of Italy, who had 362.100. Cassidy Krug of the U.S. was fifth at 345.600 in her first Olympics. Her teammate, Christina Loukas, advanced to Sunday's final in sixth at 339.750.

SHOOTING: American Jamie Lynn Gray won the gold medal in women's 50-meter three-position rifle shooting, setting two Olympic records along the way. Gray clinched gold on her final shot with a 10.8 — just 0.1 off a perfect score. Italy's Jessica Rossi won the gold medal in women's trap shooting, missing just one of 100 shots to set a world record. Her lone miss came on the 18th shot of the 25-shot final.

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