USA Misty May-Treanor/Kerri Walsh Olympic Beach Volleyball, Gold Over #1 Chinese

UPDATED: 21 August 2008

The US has not lost a match, or a set, in 107 straight matches.  No one can even fathom that number.  It is like trying to understand the Universe.  Billions of Stars, Hundreds of Billions of planets in our own Galaxy, hundreds of millions of life years away.  And we drive 70 miles an hour on the freeway and get speeding tickets.  Now add to that that these ladies are 460-18 since 2004.  We are talking astronomical numbers.

These women have accomplished something nearly as difficult to realize.  All the best teams in the world, from every country, out of 6 billion people, every combination of 2 women that are above average to excellent in beach volleyball in the world have tried to beat these beautiful ladies.   And you know what?  They can’t.

Misty says, “I am good, Kerri is good, but together we are GOLDEN!!”  Misty understands the primary definition of the word “team”.  It has a selfishness and pride in each other that is required to win.  It is like a successful marriage where the partners understand that they are a team and it is them against the world.  When you cannot take pride in your partner’s victories, when you start thinking of yourself above the team, you lose!

This article will be long.  The reason?  This match deserves strong coverage.  It deserves nearly a point-by-point call of each event.  We will also provide a video, but please, read the emotion this game sparked.  Our hearts were in our throats through every point.  Our effort went into every word.  And these spectacular champions are as much in every emotion we express in our words as can possibly be reflected from watching this game.

The first set, in the monsoon rains, was difficult.  Blocking was the most difficult aspect, because blocking a slippery ball is much harder than blocking a dry ball.  The wet ball does not stick to the arms, it slides through.  And that made Kerri’s job that much more difficult.  Misty will block on occasion, but blocking is Kerri’s specialty, so this had to be Misty’s match.

Misty’s mother died recently and she has spread her mother’s ashes throughout the world into the sands of her games.  She has also added a tattoo to her shoulder in honor of her mother.  Misty has undying love and commitment.  The reason she cannot be beaten is because there is no one and nothing that can beat her.  Sounds like the same thing, but it isn’t.  Think about it.

Kerri/Walsh were scary in the first set.

In the second set, they took an early lead 3-0.  But this Chinese team was tough. There was never any doubt that anything less than a 20-0 lead was over with Tian/Wang.

Sure enough, bit by bit, the Chinese tenacious play had come back to even.  How could it be?  Could Kerri and Misty be wearing down.  Certainly, it could happen.  These Chinese are butch and strong.  And they are mutants.  The tallest player is only ½ inch shorter than Kerri.  So this isn’t a matter of height.  It is a matter of talent.

It seemed like May-Treanor-Walsh had a chance to win easily by spreading the lead to 6-3.  But we already told you, these Chinese Girls have beaten the US team before.  And they have the sense of searching for blood.  They also have some tricks, but we will point that out later.

One thing you constantly notice about Kerri and Misty is how much they appreciate each other in the matches.  They can get completely outmatched and embarrassed on a point, and still, they stand up, brush themselves off, and greet each other, even on the lost point for their incredible effort.  They recognize that every point is difficult, and as a team, they earn everything, even the misses.

It is hard to understand congratulating someone for a point lost.  But it is all in the knowledge that both you and your partner did your very best to not let it be a point for the other side.  Neither of you let the other down.  It was just a point.  It happens.  That makes a team, and in this case the best Olympic Beach Volleyball team in history.

The Asians needed a timeout.   So Tian tends to fake injury.  At this juncture, down 2, the Chinese needed to slow the momentum.   This has been played before.  It is cheap, and has never been played by the greats, but it does get played by the losers.  It sometimes works to deflect the true winners momentum, but in reality, it is a cheap tactic.  The Chinese had used a similar tactic in …

In the last set, May-Treanor leads 18-17.  Tian has this forward spin to take serves. Misty bounces it up.  Kerri spike, but the Chinese do not go down easy.  And in the next volley, Misty cannot get the spike off and Tian gets off a mean block feeding it back in Misty’s face.

At Set Point 20-18, Misty Served.  The Chinese team makes a weak return and Misty returns it for an easy placement shot in the middle of the sand.

Kerri was the most valuable player in 2004.  This year it was Misty.  An that shows something that all teams should take notice of.  That is what a team is.  Both are great.  108 matches without a defeat!!

Gold America.

FIRST POST, 21 August 2008, 2:00am

Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh beat the #1 ranked Chinese team for Gold!!!  Not just Gold, their second consecutive Olympic Gold!!! The first women’s team to ever get back-to-back Golds in the Olympics.

These ladies had to play in a torrential downpour against a very strong Chinese team and won their 108th match in a row.  Think about that number.  Olympic Gold is difficult, downright near impossible, but winning 108 matches in a row in World and Olympic competition?  That is insane!!!!!!

We will be back with a video and a complete play by play.  We will not let you, our readers down, on this.  Please come back.  You WILL get the absolute best coverage of this historical and super human event!!!

Misty, we love you!!  Kerri, we adore you!!  Just being on the same sand is an honor to any team.
GO USA!!!  GO USA!!!  GO USA!!!

FIRST SET



Second Set: First part

For the WIN!! Second Set, Last Part

90% Of Our Pollsters Feel China Women’s Gymnastics Squad Should Be Stripped of Gold Medals

In our poll, we have asked our readers if they feel that China’s Women’s Gymnastics squad should be stripped of their Gold medals. In similar polls, we have asked if they feel Gold medals and various judging calls clearly favored the Chinese in what appeared to be cheats or set-ups. Finally, we have asked if they consider that China Cheats by allowing girls that are significantly under age.

We have had an overwhelming response and the results may surprise you. Approximately 85-90% of respondents believe that China does cheat and should be denied their medals. They believe that introducing significantly under age girls into the Olympics is a violation of Olympic rules and should deny China the right to compete.

While we originally favored not penalizing the Chinese teams that did cheat, we have changed that view. Had it been America that cheated, the world would have called us a disgrace and gladly disqualified our teams. But America does not cheat. China cheats. And the world allows it. We are at a loss for words why some say they hate an honest America when in even something as simple as Olympics Competition, China demonstrates clear dishonesty and does not garner the same hostility?

Perhaps media control and protected borders shield a nation from the eventual destruction that led to the fall of the Berlin Wall and the ultimate collapse of the USSR. But in the long run, people tend to hate success. Jealousy is why other nations hate the US. Fear that their lifestyles and freedoms will be more popular, thus breeding dissent from others in their own nations that similarly desire those freedoms, as would any human being.

Totalitarianism works for a while, but it usually fails, because it typically does not consider the rights of the individual. Making slaves out of children to make them Olympic Athletes, tearing them from their families and forcing them into training, only to discard them along the way if things don’t work out is child abuse.

Our Constitution, written by some of the most brilliant men in the last millennium, makes the US great, and if it applied to the entire world, all nations and all people would benefit.

China cheated before…

While it appears that some Chinese people may have been ‘in the dark’ about the minimum age rule in Olympic gymnastics, the same cannot be said about China’s women’s gymnastic team. Yang Yun, who was a double bronze winning Chinese gymnast in the 2000 Olympics in Sydney,  was originally listed as 16 years of age but later admitted on state television that she was only 14 when she competed.

The IOC, which was as spineless eight years ago as it is now, shrugged its shoulders and Yang was permitted to keep her medal. Eight years later in Beijing, it appears that Team China has managed to ‘pull off the same trick’ once again and this time it could carry away gold.

Shawn Johnson Gold Olympics Balance Beam… Finally! Retires From Women’s Gymnastics? Nastia Liukin Silver.

Cheng Fei, one of the few legal contestants from the Chinese team, went first.  She stumbled on the beam and nearly fell, but managed to maintain her balance.  Her dismount had a step, but overall, her performance was strong and had a high difficulty at 6.800.  Her total score after the beam was 15.950.

Li Shanshan of China, another of the coincidental 16 year olds on the Chinese team, is considered one of the best in the world.  But on a back-flip, she completely missed the beam and tumbled off looking anything but graceful, barely catching the beam with her hands.  She recovered like a champion, but she was not going to be in the medals in this competition, but her consolation is she can come back when she is actually of age.  Her score was an absurd 15.3.  Her fall should have placed her below 15, but it would not matter.

Shawn Johnson came up and was perfection.  There is no way to describe it in words.  A slight step back on the dismount was her only flaw.  Every move was perfect.  Her smile was glowing after the performance.  Nastia was next, but Shawn was obviously anxious after other poor judging in these Olympics prior to her performance.  Then, the smile.  The relief.  The score. 16.225.  No one was beating Shawn this time, except maybe Nastia?  That was the highest score on beam in China.

Nastia was similar in perfection.  Smoother, but a slight stumble cost her the Gold.  There was a hop on the dismount for another deduction, but this performance is similar in greatness.  This time, no one would take the Americans’ thunder.  This was 1-2 all the way!!  Shawn and Nastia embraced and awaited the score.  Both smiling, but both nervous.  Nastia…16.025.  No one would come close to either girl’s score.  It was over.

Shawn Johnson GOLD!!!  Nastia Liukin SILVER!!!  US 1-2 and Legitimate Too!!

Liang Chow, the US Coach was gleaming.  Shawn trained under coach Liang Chow for ten years for this moment.

Watching Shawn take the top of the podium for Gold was a tearful event for us.  But Shawn was all smiles.  During the National Anthem, Shawn was dead serious, and you could see a twitch in her face; the shock of it all was coming home.    And just as you thought she would shed a tear, she turned forward and smiled.  No tears are inside this girl.

After the event, Shawn said, possibly revealing her desire to quit at the top, “To finally get the gold on my final routine in my Olympic career…, uh, experience, it’s the perfect ending. It means more to me than any medal ever could.”

Indeed, Shawn had a fairy tale ending that brings tears to our eyes. And it was all that much sweeter with Nastia taking Silver at her side.

Please check our other Olympic stories on Shawn and Nastia by clicking here.

THE WINNING FORM!

The Awarding Ceremony



Chinese Disgrace, Shows Clearly They Cheat, Listing Yang Yilin as 15. Nastia Liukin Loses Gold in a Farce! You HAVE TO SEE THIS VIDEO!!

People cannot seem to understand how critical age is in women’s gymnastics. They seem to think that an older performer is better or more experienced, when in gymnastics it is dramatically far from the truth. Nastia Liukin had been injured last year and was fortunately healthy for these Olympics, but as the NBC announcer said, “Many said she was too old and too beat up”. At 18, she was too old!!!??? Such is the world of gymnastics where Nadia Comaneci won her first gold at the age of 14 and most are out of the sport before age 20.

Anna Liukin, Nastia’s mother, couldn’t even attend when her daughter Nastia competed for and won the All Around Gold Medal in Women’s Gymnastics. She had to find out via a text message on her cell.

Today, she would be in the audience, but she didn’t look comfortable.

The14-year old He Kexin, claimed by China to be 16, walked to the front of the uneven parallel bars. As NBC put it, “Does she look 16 to you?” No, because she isn’t, but she certainly looks older than Deng LinLin who we believe could be as young as 11. Kexin is great, but she could not have fairly qualified until she was 18, four years from now. While she is a great performer, it is a disgrace she is in the competition.

Kexin had fallen before, but she did not this time and was looking strong until she did the transition from the low bar to high bar and fell to an arms length downwards not able to quite make the transition smoothly. He’s dismount was ugly along with a step to the side. She got a much-undeserved 16.725, and one began to wonder if money was greasing the palms of the judges.

Nastia Liukin was next. She should not let cheating get to her, but it was obvious this was another Chinese setup. Nastia wasn’t as crisp as she could have been. Her high bar moves and dismount were fantastic, but her low bar moves looked a tad off. A tie at 16.725!! Oh my.

You cannot tie at the Olympic Games, which leaves it up to the computer to rank the gymnast. The NBC announcer once again caught China cheating. “I think they dropped the ball on this one. He Kexin had more visible errors”, he exclaimed, “That was not right!” Nastia showed the frustration plainly as the Chinese scoreboard showed He in the lead despite Kexin’s weaker performance and an unearned tie score.

It was time for Yanh Yilin to perform. The contestants must be Age 16 to compete. The screen clearly showed Yilin to be Age 15 (SEE OUR VIDEO). This should be an immediate disqualification. She nailed all points of her performance, outperforming Nastia and He, but she was clearly listed as under age. Could the Chinese finally be admitting they were cheating? And yet, she only got a 16.650 and looked totally dismayed. Maybe she lost a 10th of a point for being underage?

Photos were taken of the two Chinese underage girls posing with their lying coaches. It was a pretty sight, a 15 year old and 14 year old illegally in the Olympics.

Nastia was robbed in China.  A Gold medal had been awarded by 1/1000 of a point to the illegal Chinese contestant despite numerous visible flaws in her performance.

It is sad, that with all the talent that the Chinese possess, they have to resort to cheating to win in events for which they should not have even qualified.

The Olympics Women’s Gymnastics were a sham. Had the Americans just plain not been spectacular, the Chinese would have assured their underage girls would have won it all!

Yet another judging error in this Gymnastic competition!

Yang Yilin’s Performance with an intro showing her age as 15 yo.
The “uneven” results with commentary.

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FIND MORE OLYMPIC DISCREPANCIES IN WOMEN’S GYMNASTICS, HERE.

US Team Defeats All Odds Goes 1-2-3 in Men’s 400 Meter Hurdles: Angelo Taylor, Kerron Clement & Breshawn Jackson!! Champions All!

The US Team had three racers in the Men’s 400 Meter Hurdles finals for the medals.  All three rose to the occasion.  It was US 1-2-3, and there would be no judges to spoil this event.

Angelo Taylor put the field away for Gold.  Angelo won the gold in Sydney eight yeras ago and again now in Beijing, proving he is the best anywhere in the world.  Kerron Clement took the Silver!!  And Breshawn Jackson with the Bronze.  All American Heroes!!!  Jackson said it all, “The US is behind us 100%, and it is an honor just to represent America.”  You honored us today Breshawn.  All three of you.

Welcome to greatness and history.

There Is No Gold In The Brazilian Flag, Misty May Treanor and Kerri Walsh Prove It In Women’s Beach Volleyball Slaughter

Misty May Treanor and Kerri Walsh were in the final round against Talita Antunes and Renata Ribeiro of Brazil.  Any loss here, and despite their undefeated record, either team could only Bronze.  No chance at Gold or Silver.  One loss and the chance at Gold in the finals for the losing team was gone.

Misty and Kerri jumped out to a huge 9-3 lead over their rivals.  Misty and Kerri were angry, and they were taking it out on the girls from Brazil.  66 minutes before start time for the game, the Brazilians pulled rank and kicked the US team off the number one Warm Up Court.  Misty and Kerri moved on silently, but now they were showing the Brazilians why they didn’t mind.  The Americans were making the Brazilian team look like little more than a warm up for Gold in the real game.

There is getting angry and there is getting even.  At 11-5, already a score where Brazil should be thinking Bronze would better match their hair colors than gold anyway, there was a classic US Point.  Walsh missed a block on a touch shot by Brazil.  Misty made a super-human dive to scoop the ball up.  Walsh took the opportunity to set it up for Misty and she killed it.  12-5.

At 13-6, Walsh had Green and Yellow for lunch, stuffing it back in the Brazilians’ faces, and taking it to 14-6.  There is no Gold in the Brazilian flag, it is yellow, and that wasn’t going to change if it was up to Misty and Kerri today.  Would you like the number one practice court girls?  Anytime.

Set Misty, Smash Kerri, 15-6.  You do NOT want to get these gals hot!  The Brazilians were undefeated coming into this match.  They got cocky.  Now there was no hope for them.  Bear in mind Misty is playing sick with a cold and fever, and she is still making the Brazilians look like beginners.

Walsh made a shot that should have been an easy return for the Brazilians, but they were so shaken up, they tapped it in the air and watched it land in the sand.  Another Misty Smash, you have to love this woman’s heart, 18-7.  If we were the Brazilian ladies, we would have forfeited the first set right then and there and started from scratch.

After a long rally that went to Brazil, the Green and Yellow took 3 points running.  But you don’t come back on Misty and Kerri from 11 points down.  20-11, set point on a Walsh smash.  Whoops.  Walsh served into the net?  Oh well, it was only one set point lost and Misty killed it for a 21-12 humiliation of Green and Yellow in the first set.

The Brazilians came out stronger in the second set, keeping it close.  Misty and Kerry were up 7-6, but then, Walsh came up with an Olympic quality crushing smash.  8-6.

The Brazilians showed they have some fight and came back to 10-10, but it was on a questionable call where the referee said Walsh did not have enough velocity on the ball to call it a hit.  Huh?  It isn’t like the Kerri caught the ball!!  No matter.

Misty and Kerri responded with two fast points.  12-10.  The Brazilians were chasing Misty and Kerri for the rest of the match.  14-12, 15-12, Stuff Misty, 16-12, Brazil out, 17-12, Brazil out again, 18-12.  We have to comment on the next series.  Misty served at 18-12, and Talita made a spectacular smash right at Misty who sent in the air.  It was all Kerri could do to get it up and over the net giving the Brazilians another chance for a kill!  Talita spikes again, and Misty will not let it hit sand, barely getting it in the air.  Walsh jumps in setting up the spike, and Misty, leaps out of the sand, from her knees, jumps and spikes a winner.  19-12.  Brazilians have no hope.  You do not come back against Misty and Kerry down 19-12.  Stuff Walsh 20-12.  Match Point.

Set Match US 21-12, 21-14.  Just wanted to let Talita and Renata know, they can have whatever court they want to practice on…for the Bronze.

Redeem Team Crushes Germany Just For Fun… and Fear

By Evan Roessle, Guest Writer

This was more or less a meaningless game for Team USA. Their position in the upcoming rounds is secure because of their undefeated record in group play.

In their last game, the Redeem Team dismantled Spain who many believed to be the best team in the tournament, but it was possible they could let up in this game against the Germans, given that it will make no difference when the medals get decided.

The German team is built primarily around two key players, Dirk Nowitzki, a seven foot forward who plays for the Dallas Mavericks, and Chris Kaman, another seven footer that plays for the Los Angeles Clippers. Relative to these tall men, the US team could be considered somewhat undersized.

Although the German giants seemed imposing, it didn’t take long to establish that their size would have little impact on the outcome of the game. Team USA toyed with the Germans, stealing the ball, and setting up numerous fasts breaks for easy points.

Dwight Howard dominated the middle, blocking shots and scoring easily down low. He was extremely efficient, converting an astounding 90% of his shots. At half time, the United States had opened up a fairly large lead and did not show any signs of slowing down.

They continued to build their lead in the second half, with good defense and lights-out shooting. The United States doubled the Germans point total, cutting the German giants down to size, en route to a crushing win, 106-57.

The Redeem Team demonstrated that they understand winning games always matters, even when the championship isn’t on the line. Destroying Germany will remind every team to come that Team USA isn’t going to let up. The scores run up against Spain and Germany are intimidating, and will be on the minds of Team USA’s opponents for the remainder of the Olympics.

The United States will play Australia for their first game in the second round. This is a rematch of an exhibition game the Redeem Team won by 11, but at the time, the Australians were missing their best player, center Andrew Bogut. Will Bogut’s return matter?

We doubt it. That was an exhibition game…this one will count. As we look toward the match up, we expect Team USA will win easily, and it appears there is not one team that can stop them on the way to Gold but themselves.

Alicia Sacramone Deprived Of Medal As China Falls Down in Olympic Women’s Gymnastics Vault

To start, in the draw, Alicia had drawn the short straw and had to go first.  We are not sure how the drawing is done, but it did seem awfully coincidental that Shawn Johnson also drew the short straw in her event.  Going first is always a disadvantage, and both Americans drew the short straw out of the entire field?

Alicia had two vaults in the competition to redeem herself, but on each she bounced slightly on the landing.  Both vaults had been executed perfectly, but those little hops cost her points as she netted a 15.75 and a 15.325 for an average score of 15.537.

Next up was Cheng Fei from China, the only girl on the Chinese team that actually looks above the age of 16.  She did a higher difficulty vault, but also hopped slightly on the landing.  The vault itself was strong and the judges apparently decided the small hop was not worth a deduction and awarded her a 16.075.  She failed horribly on her next vault.  She hit the vault sideways; that was one penalty. Then she could not get enough height, and ended up landing on her knees; another major penalty.

The score she received was not believable.  Her second vault was awarded an overly generous 15.05 and that placed her average score just a hair above Alicia’s at 15.562, about 2/100 of a point ahead of Alicia.  Bear in mind that she got a 15.05 for falling, but Alicia had been awarded a 15.325 on her vault, which was perfect except for a small hop at the end.  Had Cheng Fei even been awarded a 15.00, Alicia would have bronzed.  The judges had given Cheng Fei just enough to ensure Alicia would not medal, but later vaults similar to Cheng’s were awarded 14s.

This atrocious judging pushed Alicia out to fourth.  Korea gets the Gold, Germany the Silver, and China the Bronze.  Alicia missed the medal by 2/100 of a point and, despite having executed excellent vaults and having landed on her feet both times, still ended up behind the Chinese Bronze Medalist who executed a horrible second vault, landing on her knees.

This was an enormous judging error that cheated Alicia out of her chance to redeem herself and out of a Medal she deserved.

This will be an Olympics that Alicia will want to forget.  At age 20, it quite likely will be her last.

Watch Alicia Sacramone and Cheng Fei’s actual perfomances and judge for yourself… Cheng Fei falls on her knees, and she gets a Bronze medal. Sacramone misses the Bronze by 2/100 of a point…

Please take time now to watch the commentary of Bela Karolyi, the legendary US gymnastics coach. His view on the vault final as a “total rip-off…”

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