Kayla Harrison lost in the semifinals of the World Judo Championship on Friday but recovered to win bronze, one year after reconstructive knee surgery.
Harrison, who became the first American to win Olympic judo gold in 2012, fell to Brazil’s Mayra Aguiar in the 78-kilogram semifinals in Chelyabinsk, Russia. Aguiar went on to win the World Championship. Harrison had beaten Aguiar in the 2010 World Championships final and 2012 Olympic semifinals.
“Mentally, it’s good, because failure is my fuel,” Harrison said in a video interview.
Harrison earned one of the division’s two bronze medals in the repechage, the U.S.’ lone medal of the meet.
Harrison, 24, entered Friday ranked 17th due to not competing from April 2013 to June 2014 due to the knee surgery.
The 2015 World Judo Championships are in Astana, Kazakhstan.
Man with cerebral palsy towed through Ironman by twin brother
We already knew Katie Ledecky can beat the boys in practice, even an Olympic champion.
One of the many takeaways from this week’s Sports Illustrated profile of Ledecky is that she has beaten 11-time Olympic medalist Ryan Lochte in practice.
Ledecky and Lochte may rep different swim clubs — Ledecky in Washington, D.C., and Lochte in Charlotte — but they both take trips to the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., for altitude training.
“She swims like a guy,” Lochte said after training with Ledecky in Colorado Springs in March, according to SI. “I’ve never seen a female swimmer like that. … Her times are becoming good for a guy. She’s beating me now, and I’m like, What’s going on?”
When Ledecky broke the women’s 1500m freestyle world record for the third time at the August 2014 Pan Pacific Championships, her time of 15:28.36 was .01 faster than Lochte’s 1500m free time at the 2004 U.S. Olympic Trials (one of the rare instances Lochte swam a 1500m free).
Ledecky has since re-broken the women’s 1500m free world record twice more, bringing it down to 15:25.48.
“I trained with her in Colorado once, and she made me look like I was stopping,” Lochte reportedly told media on his 31st birthday, Aug. 3 at the World Championships in Kazan, Russia. “She flew by me.”
MORE: Shirley Babashoff bows to Katie Ledecky
Athens Olympic softball champion Jennie Finch will manage the Bridgeport Bluefish, an independent minor-league baseball team on Sunday and, reportedly, become the first woman to manage a men’s pro baseball team.
Finch, a pitcher, retired from softball in 2010, two years after her sport’s Olympic farewell in Beijing, where she and the U.S. took silver behind Japan.
Finch has been an advocate for softball’s return to the Olympics, which could happen in Tokyo 2020.
The International Olympic Committee is expected to decide in August if baseball and softball, among four other sports, will be added for the Tokyo Games.
Finch, who is married to former MLB pitcher Casey Daigle, is also known for having struck out Albert Pujols.
MORE: Jennie Finch, Lisa Fernandez weigh in on Mo’ne Davis