U.S. women claim basketball gold in rout of France
TribLIVE Sports Videos
LONDON — The names change, not the results. Just call the U.S. women's basketball team Olympic champion.
The Americans won their fifth straight gold medal Saturday, routing France, 86-50, and putting more distance between themselves and the rest of the world heading to Rio for the 2016 Games.
Candace Parker scored 21 points, including eight straight during the game-changing run in the second quarter, as the U.S. won its 41st straight Olympic game since taking bronze medal in 1992.
In that stretch, the Americans have won by nearly 30 points per game. Only one team has stayed within single digits of them, and they've lost just once in major international competitions, to Russia in the semifinals of the 2006 world championship.
Teresa Edwards, Dawn Staley, Sheryl Swoopes and Lisa Leslie got the amazing run started. Now Diana Taurasi, Sue Bird and Tamika Catchings have continued it.
With young stars Parker, Maya Moore and Tina Charles a big part of the success in London, it doesn't look like the run will end anytime soon.
Tamika Catchings said the Americans “just wanted to keep that legacy going.” Edwards, a five-time Olympian, said no worry there.
“The legacy is real,” said Edwards, who had a front-row seat Saturday. “What these kids have been doing is amazing. Without much time to practice. In the middle of the WNBA season. And they look good. It's like the whole world knows who we are. I'm really proud of them.”
McKeesport's Swin Cash chipped in three points, one assist and a rebound in the blowout as she earned her second Olympic gold medal.
The U.S. faced its only challenge of the London Games when Australia took a four-point halftime lead. It was the first time in 12 years that the Americans had been trailing at the half.
“It's not easy to just be put together and be expected to win a gold medal,” Taurasi said. “It's a special feeling.”
France, which came into the game unbeaten, stayed with the U.S. for the first 12 minutes before Parker took over. She scored eight straight points during a 13-2 run that gave the U.S. a 37-23 advantage. Twice the 6-foot-4 Parker grabbed the rebound on the defensive end and dribbled up through the defense scoring on the other.
“We always felt like as long as we played our best ... we'd be all right,” Bird said.
With the victory, Moore joined an exclusive club. She's the seventh player to win titles in college, the WNBA, the FIBA world championship and the Olympics.
Teammates Bird, Taurasi and Cash are already members of that club.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Penguins sign defensive prospect
- Liriano, Pirates complete sweep of Tigers
- Kessel ‘excited’ to be a Penguin
- Hurricanes owner rips Rutherford, Penguins
- Wolf vetoes bill to privatize Pennsylvania’s liquor system
- Man who threatened to jump from bridge in custody
- Attorney General’s twin sister sued by FBI agent ex-boyfriend
- NHL notebook: St. Louis retires after 16-year career
- Rossi: Wild Wednesday proves Steelers rule
- Wabash Tunnel to open to inbound, high-occupancy vehicles Saturday night
- Youngest champion in tournament history to play for Mt. Lebo clay crown