Helen Maroulis
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Team USA’s Maroulis takes 53 kg gold in historic wrestling upset

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Entering the gold medal match of the women’s 53 kg (116 lbs.) freestyle wrestling competition, Japan’s Saori Yoshida had never lost a match in the Summer Olympics. With three gold medals, not to mention 13 world championships, to her credit Yoshida is an all-time great in the sport.

WATCH: Maroulis used lessons learned in London to win gold

But the Olympic run came to an end Thursday afternoon, as American Helen Maroulis beat Yoshida by the final score of 4-1. Trailing 1-0 at the end of the first period, Maroulis scored a two-point takedown in the first minute of the second period. Another two-point score for Maroulis would provide the final margin, with Yoshida unable to make the scoring moves needed to keep her hopes of another gold medal alive.

WATCH: Helen Maroulis wins historic wrestling gold for Team USA

When Yoshida won her first Olympic gold medal in Athens in 2004, Maroulis was less than a month away from her 13th birthday. And now Maroulis is an Olympic gold medalist, defeating Yoshida to accomplish that goal. With the win, Maroulis is the first American woman to win an Olympic wrestling gold medal.

WATCH: Helen Maroulis receives Olympic gold medal

Taking bronze in the competition were Sweden’s Sofia Mattsson and Azerbaijan’s Natalya Sinishin, with Mattsson losing to Maroulis 5-0 in the semifinal round.

Bobby Joe Morrow, triple Olympic sprint champion, dies at 84

Bobby Joe Morrow
AP
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Bobby Joe Morrow, one of four men to win the 100m, 200m and 4x100m at one Olympics, died at age 84 on Saturday.

Morrow’s family said he died of natural causes.

Morrow swept the 100m, 200m and 4x100m at the 1956 Melbourne Olympics, joining Jesse Owens as the only men to accomplish the feat. Later, Carl Lewis and Usain Bolt did the same.

Morrow, raised on a farm in San Benito, Texas, set 11 world records in a short career, according to World Athletics.

He competed in one Olympics, and that year was named Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year while a student at Abilene Christian. He beat out Mickey Mantle and Floyd Patterson.

“Bobby had a fluidity of motion like nothing I’d ever seen,” Oliver Jackson, the Abilene Christian coach, said, according to Sports Illustrated in 2000. “He could run a 220 with a root beer float on his head and never spill a drop. I made an adjustment to his start when Bobby was a freshman. After that, my only advice to him was to change his major from sciences to speech, because he’d be destined to make a bunch of them.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Johnny Gregorek runs fastest blue jeans mile in history

Johnny Gregorek
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Johnny Gregorek, a U.S. Olympic hopeful runner, clocked what is believed to be the fastest mile in history for somebody wearing jeans.

Gregorek recorded a reported 4 minutes, 6.25 seconds, on Saturday to break the record by more than five seconds (with a pacer for the first two-plus laps). Gregorek, after the record run streamed live on his Instagram, said he wore a pair of 100 percent cotton Levi’s.

Gregorek, the 28-year-old son of a 1980 and 1984 U.S. Olympic steeplechaser, finished 10th in the 2017 World Championships 1500m. He was sixth at the 2016 U.S. Olympic Trials.

He ranked No. 1 in the country for the indoor mile in 2019, clocking 3:49.98. His outdoor mile personal best is 3:52.94, ranking him 30th in American history.

Before the attempt, a fundraiser was started for the National Alliance on Mental Illness, garnering more than $29,000. Gregorek ran in memory of younger brother Patrick, who died suddenly in March 2019.

“Paddy was a fan of anything silly,” Gregorek posted. “I think an all out mile in jeans would tickle him sufficiently!”

MORE: Seb Coe: Track and field needs more U.S. meets

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