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5 to Watch: Stanford's Ledecky Targets One More Medal; Men's Hoops Goes for 2nd Win

Team USA swimming continues in the spotlight at the Tokyo Olympics, with Stanford’s Katie Ledecky back in the pool Friday to try to add to her medal collection. Plus the women’s 100m takes center stage at the track and field venue, and men’s basketball takes on Czech Republic. Here’s what’s on tap for Friday-Saturday:

Katie Ledecky, Caeleb Dressel look to continue Team USA domination in the pool

Swimming events are drawing to a close soon, with Day 8 being the penultimate day for swimming competition in Tokyo. There will be four more medals up for grabs: men’s 100m butterfly, women’s 200m backstroke, women’s 800m freestyle and the mixed 4x100m medley relay.

Stanford’s Katie Ledecky looks to add to her impressive collection of Olympic medals in the women’s 800m freestyle final. Ledecky is the defending Olympic champion in the race, winning gold in Rio and setting a new world record.

Caeleb Dressel will have a busy night. The four-time gold medalist will be competing in three different races on Friday night: men’s 100m butterfly final, men’s 50m freestyle semis, and the 4x100m mixed medley relay.

The mixed medley relay is the first ever mixed-gender swimming race in Olympic history. Dressel swam the butterfly leg in the finals of the 2019 Worlds and will also participate in the Olympic final as well. Regan Smith, Andrew Wilson, Tom Shields and Abbey Weitzeil swam for Team USA during the prelims.

Watch live in NBC’s primetime coverage, or stream live.

Caeleb Dressel, campeón de EEUU
Caeleb Dressel

U.S. men’s basketball aims for second consecutive win vs. Czech Republic

The U.S. men’s basketball team came to Tokyo struggling to find a rhythm in exhibition play. Those struggles continued as they lost their opening matchup to France 83-76, snapping a 25-game Olympic win streak.

Team USA seemed to get back on track Wednesday night against Iran, winning by a score of 120-66 and earning their first win of the Tokyo Olympics.

Next up for Team USA in preliminary Group A play is the Czech Republic at 5 a.m Saturday. Kevin Durant has a chance to surpass Carmelo Anthony as the all-time scorer in United States men’s Olympic basketball history. Durant currently sits five points shy of the record (336 points) held by Anthony.

Watch on Peacock or stream live.

Kevin Durant (right) and Damian Lillard.

Women’s 100m highlights big day on the track

The race that will crown the world’s fastest woman takes place on Day 8 of the Tokyo Olympic Games. While it is certainly the most high-profile race of the evening, there are plenty of noteworthy events happening in track and field.

The first track and field session of Day 8 in Tokyo begins at 5 p.m. with heats in six events: women’s 400m hurdles, women’s discus throw, men’s pole vault, men’s 800m, women’s 100m hurdles, and the men’s 100m. American pole vaulter and 2016 Olympic bronze medalist Sam Kendricks is no longer competing after testing positive for COVID-19. Team USA’s medal hopes in the men’s 100m rest on the shoulder of Trayvon Bromwell, who won the 100m final at the U.S. Olympic Track and Field trials.

The second session begins at 3 a.m. Saturday and will include the marquee race of the day: the women’s 100m. American Sha’carri Richardson was supposed to go to Tokyo a medal favorite in the event, but will no longer compete after being suspended one month for failing a drug test at the U.S. Olympic Track and field trials.

Teahna Daniels, Javianne Oliver and Jenna Prandini all qualified to race in the women’s 100m. They will carry the burden of trying to win the United States’ first legal gold since Gail Devers triumphed in 1996. Marion Jones was stripped of the 2000 title for doping offences.

Watch the first session in NBC’s primetime coverage, or stream live at 3 a.m.

Stream the second session live.

Teahna Daniels smiles
Teahna Daniels, of United States, gestures ahead of her heat of the women’s 100-meters at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Friday, July 30, 2021, in Tokyo. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)

U.S. women’s volleyball looks to stay undefeated

The U.S. women’s volleyball team takes on the Russian Olympic Committee at 7:05 p.m. Friday. Team USA has won the first three of its five total group-stage matches, while ROC is 2-1. Most recently, the team won bronze in 2016 and silver in both 2012 and 2008, but Jordan Larson, Jordan Thompson and Co. have a good chance at winning their first gold in Tokyo. Thompson has been the team’s leading scorer through its first three matches.

Stream live

Team USA poses for a group photo after their 3-2 victory over Turkey, at the end of a women’s volleyball preliminary round pool B match, at the 2020 Summer Olympics, early Friday, July 30, 2021, in Tokyo, Japan. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

Palmer, Hernandez advance in women’s springboard

Krysta Palmer, a former gymnast who didn’t start diving until she was 20, has an outside chance at medaling in the women’s 3m springboard. She and the other American in the field, Hailey Hernandez, advanced to the semis at 11 p.m. Friday.

Palmer, 29, finished eighth in the synchronized springboard final with her partner, Alison Gibson. She finishes her slate of dives in the individual competition with a difficult dive known as “the double out.”

Stream live

Hailey Hernandez dives
U.S. diver Hailey Hernandez sails through the air in Friday’s Olympic springboard preliminaries

Source: NBC Bay Area

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