High-SchoolGirl: London Olympics

Teens bring medal haul back from London

August, 13, 2012
8/13/12
10:35
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The podium was a popular place to be for the high school-aged Olympians in London.

Nine different girls earned at least one medal at the London Games, which came to an end with the closing ceremonies on Sunday.

Team USA won a total of 104 medals in London (58 were won by women), and high school-aged girls contributed 12 of them.

Here is the breakdown:

Missy Franklin, swimmer: The 17-year-old senior-to-be at Regis Jesuit (Aurora, Colo.) had to cram the most medals into her bag of any of the teens, taking four golds and a bronze. Franklin took the top prize in the 100-meter backstroke, the 200-meter backstroke (in world-record time), the 4x100 medley relay and the 4x200 freestyle relay. She earned bronze in the 4x100 freestyle relay.

Aly Raisman, gymnast: The 18-year-old from Needham, Mass., struck gold in the team competition and in the floor exercise and added bronze in the balance beam.

Gabby Douglas, gymnast: The home-schooled 16-year-old won gold in gymnastics' most prestigious event, the all-around competition, and also won gold in the team competition.

McKayla Maroney, gymnast: The home-schooled 16-year-old from Laguna Niguel, Calif., won gold in the team competition and silver in the vault.

Jordyn Wieber, gymnast: Although Wieber missed out on qualifying for the all-around competition, the 17-year-old senior-to-be at Dewitt (Mich.) struck gold in the team competition.

Kyla Ross, gymnast:The 15-year-old sophomore-to-be at Aliso Niguel (Aliso Viejo, Calif.) won gold in the team competition.

Katie Ledecky, swimmer:At 15, Ledecky was the youngest member of the U.S. Olympic team. Ledecky, who will be a sophomore at School of the Sacred Heart (Bethesda, Md.), leaves London with a gold medal in the 800-meter freestyle.

Lia Neal, swimmer: The 17-year-old a senior-to be at the Convent of the Sacred Heart (New York) won bronze in the 4x100 freestyle along with Franklin.

Claressa Shields, boxer: The 17-year-old senior-to-be at Northwestern (Flint, Mich.) won gold in women's boxing in the middleweight division.
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Alex Morgan's assist helped the United States women's soccer team win the gold medal with a 2-1 win over Japan at the London Olympics on Thursday, but the forward gave pointers to a different team during her Olympic build-up.

Morgan returned to her old high school, Diamond Bar (Calif.), for ESPNHS Pro Day to work with the girls' soccer team. She shared tips on penalty kicks, training and more.

Click here for a photo gallery of the day.

Click here to read more about the United States' gold-medal performance.

Claressa Shields wins boxing gold

August, 9, 2012
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Claressa Shields, 17, will be going back to Flint with a whole lot of glint.

The senior-to-be at Northwestern (Flint, Mich.) defeated 33-year-old Russian Nadezda Torlopova 19-12 on Thursday to win the gold medal in boxing's middleweight division at the London Olympics. This is the first time women's boxing has been a medal sport at the Olympics.

After getting a first-round bye, Shields beat 32-year-old Anna Laurell of Sweden 18-14 in the quarterfinals and 23-year-old Marina Volnova of Kazakhstan 29-15 in the semifinals.

Shields, the youngest member of the United States boxing team, was the only American fighter, man or woman, to win gold.

Read the full story here.
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Before Allyson Felix won the gold medal in the 200-meter dash at the London Olympics on Wednesday, she returned to her old high school, Los Angeles Baptist (North Hills, Calif.), and shared the secrets to her sprinting success at ESPNHS Pro Day.

Click here to read more about Felix's golden moment.

Claressa Shields to fight for Olympic gold

August, 8, 2012
8/08/12
11:12
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Claressa Shields, the youngest member of the United States boxing team, is the only one left standing at the London Olympics.

The 17-year-old from Flint, Mich., beat Kazakhstan’s Marina Volnova in the semifinals of the middleweight division on Wednesday to advance to Thursday's gold-medal match, where she will face 33-year-old Russian Nadezda Torlopova.

Shields, a senior-to-be at Northwestern (Flint, Mich.) who has been boxing since she was 9, beat Volnova 29-15.
The youngest women's boxer at the London Olympics has guaranteed she'll return home with some hardware.

Claressa Shields, a 17-year-old middleweight from Flint, Mich., beat Sweden's Anna Laurell 18-14 in the quarterfinals on Monday after receiving a first-round bye. Shields clinched at least a bronze medal -- two bronze medals are awarded to the semifinal losers -- but still has a shot at silver or gold.

Shields, who will be a senior at Northwestern (Flint, Mich.), takes on Marina Volnova of Kazakhstan on Wednesday in the semifinals.

Volnova defeated Great Britain's Savannah Marshall in the quarterfinals. Marshall handed Shields her only loss as an amateur in May at the Women's World Boxing Championships in Qinhuangdao, China.

Read the full story here.

Gabby Douglas wins all-around gold

August, 2, 2012
8/02/12
2:22
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Gabby Douglas won the women's all-around title Thursday at the London Olympics.

The 16-year-old became the third straight American to win the all-around gold, following Nastia Liukin in 2008 and Carly Patterson in 2004.

Douglas, who also won gold with the United States in the team competition, clinched the title on the floor exercise and finished with a score of 62.232.

Russia's Viktoria Komova took silver and Aliya Mustafina, also of Russia, took bronze.

Mustafina and American Aly Raisman finished tied for third with identical scores of 59.566, but the Russian got the bronze on a tiebreak. The lowest scores for both gymnasts were dropped, and the remaining three were totaled. That gave Mustafina a total of 45.933 and Raisman 45.366.

Read the full story here.

Missy Franklin wins second gold medal

August, 1, 2012
8/01/12
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Missy Franklin, 17, collected her second gold medal of the London Games on Wednesday when the women's 4x200 freestyle relay won in an Olympic-record time of 7 minutes, 42.92 seconds.

Australia took silver and France won bronze.

Franklin, who will be a senior at Regis Jesuit (Aurora, Colo.), also won gold in the women's 100-meter backstroke and bronze in the women's 4x100 freestyle relay. She is scheduled to swim in three more events, the 100 freestyle on Thursday, the 200 backstroke on Friday and the 4x100 medley relay on Saturday.

Read the full story here.
Missy Franklin failed to reach the podium for the first time at the London Olympics.

The senior-to-be at Regis Jesuit (Aurora, Colo.), who struck gold in the women's 100-meter backstroke on Monday and won bronze in the 4x100 freestyle relay on Saturday, finished fourth in the 200-meter freestyle on Tuesday.

Franklin is scheduled to compete in two more relays and two more individual events at the Games.

Allison Schmitt, 22, of the United States won gold and set an Olympic record in 1 minute, 53.61 seconds.

Read the full story here.

Teens lead U.S. to gymnastics gold

July, 31, 2012
7/31/12
3:51
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A group of teenagers gave the United States its first Olympic title in women's gymnastics since 1996.

High school-aged stars Gabby Douglas, 16, Jordyn Wieber, 17, McKayla Maroney, 16, Aly Raisman, 18, and Kyla Ross, 15, lived up to the hype and captured the team gold medal at the London Olympics on Tuesday. Their score of 183.596 was a comfortable five points better than silver medalist Russia. Romania won the bronze.

Wieber, the reigning world champion who failed to qualify for the all-around competition, led off for the Americans on vault. She pulled off one of the best Amanars of her life, and the United States never looked back.

Read the full story here.

Missy Franklin strikes gold in London

July, 30, 2012
7/30/12
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Missy Franklin won her first gold medal at the London Olympics on Monday.

Franklin, who will be a senior at Regis Jesuit (Aurora, Colo.) in the fall, won the women's 100-meter backstroke in 58.33 seconds. On Saturday, Franklin won bronze in the 4x100 freestyle relay. Lia Neal, a senior-to be at the Convent of the Sacred Heart (New York), was also on the third-place relay team.

Read the full story here.

Gabby Douglas: Jordyn Wieber will be OK

July, 30, 2012
7/30/12
10:36
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U.S. gymnast Gabby Douglas is a bit torn.

The 16-year-old is happy for Aly Raisman, 18, who will represent the United States with Douglas in the all-around gymnastics finals at the London Olympics. But she's sad for Jordyn Wieber, 17, the reigning world champion who failed to qualify for the finals.

"I know she will be able to get past this disappointment and help lead us in the team final," Douglas says.

The women's team final, in which the United States is the favorite, is scheduled for Tuesday.

Read Douglas' full blog on espnW here.

Lee Kiefer falls in foil quarterfinals

July, 28, 2012
7/28/12
6:23
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Lee Kiefer, a recent graduate of Dunbar (Lexington, Ky.), lost in the Olympic foil quarterfinals 15-10 to eventual silver medalist Arianna Errigo of Italy on Saturday.

But the 18-year-old wasn't dwelling on her loss.

"I'm definitely excited to be here, but I'm not overwhelmed," Kiefer said. "And I feel like I have so much more to learn before the next Olympics, and I hope everything can go well. A lot of athletes, they get injured or they just find other things to do. So I just want to keep being motivated and stay strong for the next one, so I can do better."

Kiefer will get another shot at a medal in the team event on Aug. 2.

Read the full story here.
Lee KieferGerardo Zavala/LatinContent/Getty Images, Courtesy of Teresa KieferLee Kiefer's quest for an Olympic medal begins on Saturday with the women's individual foil.

There will be no easing into the Games for Lee Kiefer. Ditto for her fellow high school-aged Olympians Missy Franklin and Lia Neal.

Kiefer, a recent graduate of Dunbar (Lexington, Ky.), will be going for a medal in individual foil on Saturday, the first full day of the 2012 London Olympics. The fencing competition begins at 6 a.m. (ET), and the gold-medal match is scheduled for 2:40 p.m. Kiefer also will compete in the team event on Aug. 2.

"Of course I want to get a medal this year, and I know I can put up a fight," said Kiefer, who will attend Notre Dame in the fall. "But I don't want to set myself up to be disappointed. [By 2016], I hope to be at my best. I know I haven't reached that point yet."

The hopes are much higher for Franklin, a senior-to-be at Regis Jesuit (Aurora, Colo.). She swims in the first of her scheduled seven events on Saturday, the 4x100 freestyle relay. Neal, a senior-to be at the Convent of the Sacred Heart (New York), is also part of that relay team after finishing fourth in the 100-meter freestyle at the Olympic trials. While Franklin has a jam-packed schedule in London, Saturday will be Neal's lone opportunity to capture gold.

Franklin, obviously, won't get much time to rest. She also is expected to compete in the 100-meter backstroke finals on Monday, the 200 freestyle on Tuesday, the 4x200 freestyle relay on Wednesday, the 100 freestyle next Thursday, the 200 backstroke on Aug. 3 and the 4x100 medley relay on Aug. 4.

The youngest member of the United States' Olympic team, Katie Ledecky, who will be a sophomore at School of the Sacred Heart (Bethesda, Md.), is scheduled to swim in the 800 freestyle on Aug. 3.

Lily Zhang, Erica Wu and Ariel Hsing
Scott Heavey/Getty ImagesClose friends Lily Zhang, Erica Wu and Ariel Hsing will represent the U.S. in the three-player Olympic team table tennis competition.
Teens are hoping to make an Olympic splash in table tennis, too.

Ariel Hsing, who will be a senior at Valley Christian (San Jose, Calif.), Lily Zhang, a junior-to-be at Palo Alto (Calif.), and Erica Wu, a junior-to be at the Westridge School (Pasadena, Calif.) will try to win the United States' first ever medal in table tennis. The women's preliminary singles rounds begin on Sunday, and the finals will be held Aug. 1. The women's team competition begins Aug. 3 and concludes on Aug. 7.

"It feels like I've been waiting for this opportunity for so long, it's been my dream ever since I was a little kid," Zhang said. "Now that it's finally here, it feels like it's still a dream. It just feels amazing."

The women's gymnastics team, which consists of high school-aged stars Gabby Douglas, Jordyn Wieber, McKayla Maroney, Aly Raisman and Kyla Ross, gets going on Sunday with the qualification rounds. The United States is the heavy favorite to win gold in the team competition on Tuesday. Douglas and Wieber, who finished 1-2 at the U.S. trials, are also favorites in the all-around competition on Aug. 2. Championships on the individual events will be held Aug. 5-7.

Reed Kessler, an 18-year-old 2012 graduate from the Professional Children's School (New York), is set to make history on Aug. 4. Although records are incomplete, she is believed to be the youngest show jumper in Olympic history. Aboard her horse Cylana, Kessler will compete in both the team event and the individual event. The team champion will be crowned Aug. 6 and the individual champion will be decided Aug. 8.

Claressa Shields, who will be a senior at Northwestern (Flint, Mich.) in the fall, is the last American high school competitor with a chance to medal in London. The middleweight will begin her quest for gold on Aug. 5. The finals are set for Aug. 9. It is the first time women's boxing will be a medal sport at the Olympics.

Click here for a complete schedule of the London Olympics.

Busy bridge to London for Ariel Hsing

July, 19, 2012
7/19/12
12:16
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Between playing a friendly game with "Uncle" Warren Buffett and "Uncle" Bill Gates, taking a pre-calculus class and winning more table tennis titles, senior-to-be Ariel Hsing has hardly had time to pack her instant noodles, chips, cookies and chocolate for the London Olympics.

Read about her Olympic preparation -- and her hopes to capture the United States' first medal in table tennis -- in her espnW blog here.

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