The 2012 Summer Olympics are wrapping up this weekend, and it’s certainly been a fun-filled and exciting fortnight for American athletes. As of mid-day on Satudray, August 11, the United States had accumulated a nation-leading 95 medals (41 gold, 26 silver, and 28 bronze). There are many memorable moments that we will all remember from these Games, and certainly there are still a few more memories to make as the last events conclude this weekend. Here is a look at 10 specific gold medal achievements from some amazing American women.
Women’s 4×100 yard relay team – Not only did the foursome of Allyson Felix, Carmelita Jeter, Bianca Knight, and Tianna Madison win the first gold in this event for the United States in 16 years, but in doing so they broke a world record that had been standing since 1985.
Missy Franklin – This was a coming-out party for the 17-year-old swimmer who finished with four gold medals (along with one bronze). Expect even more from her in four years in Rio.
Claressa Shields – First American woman to win a gold medal in boxing (this was the first Olympics where women’s boxing was a medal sport) and she did it at the tender age of 17. This was all the more impressive considering the American men’s boxing team, as a whole, were completely shut out of the medals.
Women’s Soccer Team – For me, women’s soccer was one of the most exciting sports in these Olympics. While our American women’s team has won three of last four Olympic gold medals, the world had been catching up in terms of quality competition. By no means were the Americans dominating favorites in this sports. However, Carli Lloyd scored twice in the final game against Japan and Hope Solo made a number of amazing saves to give this team a well-deserved gold.
Women’s Gymnastics Team – While the men finished a highly disappointing fifth in team competition, the ladies thoroughly dominated the night in winning the team gold in this event for the first time since the Atlanta Games in 1996.
Gabby Douglas – Won the women’s all-around individual gold medal in gymnastics, becoming the first black athlete to win an all-around gold in Olympic history (men’s or women’s). Only 16, she also set a record for being the first American female gymnast to win both the team title and the all-around individual final at the same Olympics.
Women’s Water Polo Team – The American women’s team has medaled in every Olympics since this sport became a medal event for women in 2000, but this was the first time the team actually broke through to win the gold. They were led by 19-year-old Maggie Steffens with five goals in the final match and a total of 21 for the entire tournament.
Misti-May Treanor and Kerri Walsh – This beach volleyball duo played their last Olympic match together at these Games and went out in style with their third consecutive gold medal. It has been a privilege and a joy watching these two professionals at the pinnacle of their sport go out on top.
Serena Williams – Won both the women’s individual tennis gold as well as joining with her older sister, Venus, for the women’s double gold. For a career as amazing as Serena’s, this was her first singles medal of any kind at the Olympics (her third gold in doubles).
Kimberly Rhode – Became the first athlete to medal in five straight Olympic games. Won gold in women’s skeet shooting this time to add to her two previous golds, one silver, and one bronze.
Julie is a sports addict who has been writing for the Yahoo Contributor Network for over a year. A former athlete herself, she loves watching the Olympics.