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Olympic roundup

by Compiled from Democrat-Gazette Press Services | August 16, 2016 at 2:12 a.m.


German coach dies

A canoe slalom coach from Germany died Monday after sustaining head injuries last week in a car crash in Rio de Janeiro, the country’s Olympic team said. Stefan Henze, who was 35 and won a silver medal in canoe slalom at the 2004 Athens Games, died surrounded by his family, the team said. “We know that Stefan’s own Olympic thoughts live on in many people,” Henze’s family said in a statement. Henze had been in a Rio hospital since undergoing emergency surgery following the taxi accident on Friday. “Today the sport which the whole team came to Rio for recedes into the background,” Germany team leader Michael Vesper said. Sports scientist Christian Kaeding was in the taxi with Henze but had only slight injuries. Germany will commemorate Henze’s death in the Olympic Village today, and the country’s flag will be flown at half-staff at all Olympic sites in Rio.


IOC reprimands Egyptian

An Egyptian athlete who refused to shake his Israeli opponent’s hand after their judo bout has been reprimanded and sent home from the Rio Olympics, officials said Monday. The International Olympic Committee said Islam El Shehaby received a “severe reprimand” for his behavior following his firstround heavyweight bout loss to Or Sasson on Friday. When Sasson extended his hand, El Shehaby backed away and shook his head, injecting Middle Eastern politics into the Rio Olympics. The referee called El Shehaby, 34, back to the mat and obliged to him to bow; he gave a quick nod and was loudly booed as he exited. Judo opponents typically bow or shake hands at the beginning and end of a match as a sign of respect. El Shehaby, an ultraconservative Salafi Muslim, had come under pressure from Islamist-leaning and nationalist voices in Egypt before the Rio Games to withdraw, but competed anyway. The IOC, which set up a disciplinary commission to investigate the incident, said the Egyptian’s conduct “was contrary to the rules of fair play and against the spirit of friendship embodied in the Olympic values.” The Egyptian Olympic Committee also “strongly condemned” El Shehaby’s actions “and has sent him home,” the IOC said.


Russian top heavyweight

Russian Evgeny Tishchenko held off Kazakhstan fighter Vassiliy Levit by unanimous decision and won the heavyweight gold medal. Levit appeared like he had the fight won, and battered Tishchenko in the head that cut him open and caused a lengthy stoppage in the third round. These are the first Olympics since 1980 where the fighters do not wear headgear. But the judges thought Tischchenko did enough to survive and win the bout. Tishchenko won 29-28 on all three scorecards. Tishchenko, 25, joins an elite lineage of Olympic champions at the glamour weight, including George Foreman, Ray Mercer and three-time Cuban champs Felix Savon and Teofilo Stevenson. In other matches, Americans Antonio Vargas and Mikaela Mayer both lost their bouts, dropping Team USA to 10-5 in the boxing tournament. Russian fighter Anastasiia Beliakova topped Mayer in a majority decision that knocked her out of the tournament. Shakhobidin Zoirov of Uzbekistan sent Vargas home earlier in the day by unanimous decision in a flyweight bout.


Americans advance

The U.S. women’s water polo team pushed around Brazil for most of Monday afternoon. Led by Ashleigh Johnson’s six saves, the Americans carried a shutout into the fourth quarter. Maggie Steffens, Kiley Neushul, Makenzie Fischer and Kaleigh Gilchrist scored two goals apiece to help the U.S. to a big lead in a 13-3 victory, but Brazil scored the final three goals in the fourth. The United States showed off its depth with nine different scorers. Melissa Seidemann got her first goal in Rio de Janeiro. Next up for the world champions is Hungary, which went to penalty shots against Australia before emerging with a 13-11 victory. Russia, a surprise 12-10 winner against Spain, takes on Italy in the second semifinal match on Wednesday.


Brush fire near site

A brush fire caused light ash to fall on the playing surface of the Olympic field hockey venue Monday, and officials are monitoring the nearby mountain bike competition site for problems there. The women’s field hockey quarterfinal between Britain and Spain started on time and was not affected as the wind quickly blew away any ash that might have made it on the surface. The fire started in the afternoon when temperatures at Deodoro Olympic Park reached 97 degrees, and a 26 mph wind picked up. Germany and the United States had finished playing about an hour before the problem became noticeable. Germany advanced to the semifinals with a 2-1 victory over the U.S. The International Cycling Union says it will check today for any potential impact on the mountain bike course.


Injured treated, released

The Olympic Broadcasting Service said all seven people who suffered injuries when an aerial television camera it operates plummeted about 60 feet in the Olympic park have been treated and released from care. A spokesman said the injuries were minor. They were sustained after an elevated camera that provides aerial views of the park fell to the ground. An eyewitness said he saw the camera hit two women. Chris Adams said “it looked like a flying saucer coming through the air when it hit these two women.” OBS, which has operated cameras in Olympic parks and arenas since 2001, said it has launched an investigation into the matter.


Cuban earns third gold

Cuban heavyweight Mijain Lopez once again bested Turkish rival Riza Kayaalp — this time with a performance that put him in the company of legendary wrestler Alexander Karelin. Lopez throttled Kayaalp 6-0 Monday at the Rio Games to capture his third Greco-Roman Olympic gold medal. Lopez joined Karelin of Russia and Sweden’s Carl Westergren as the only wrestlers with three Olympic titles in the classic discipline. Lopez, who lost to Kayaalp in last year’s world finals, clinched the match by scoring in just 15 seconds. It’s the eighth overall world title for Lopez.


Viviani holds off Cavendish

Elia Viviani of Italy held off Britain’s Mark Cavendish and reigning champion Norman Lasse Hansen of Denmark to win the gold medal in the multi-discipline omnium. Viviani led his rivals entering the points race, the last race in the six-discipline event, and did enough to hold off Cavendish and Hansen to win Italy’s second cycling medal of the Rio Games. Cavendish earned the Olympic medal that has long eluded him. He missed out at the 2008 Beijing Games in the Madison and in the road race at the London Games four years ago. The race was briefly neutralized with 99 of the 160 laps left when Cavendish cut down the track and into Park Sang-hoon. The Korean rider was strapped to a backboard and left on a stretcher.

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