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It has been 17 years since a then-18-year-old Allyson Felix sprinted to the first medal of her illustrious Olympics career.
On a night when the track stars will shine in Tokyo, 35-year-old Felix can make history by winning her tenth Olympic medal when she competes in the 400m dash. The race is one of several high-profile track and field finals on Day 13 of the Tokyo Olympics.
In other action, the Southern California team of Alix Klineman and April Ross will challenge for gold in beach volleyball, and the U.S. women’s volleyball and basketball teams are competing in high-stakes semifinals.
Allyson Felix is the most decorated woman in Olympic track and field history.
Team USA Legend Allyson Felix Chases a Tenth Olympic Medal
Allyson Felix was 18 years old when she won her first Olympic medal, taking home silver in the 200m dash at the 2004 Athens Olympics.
Seventeen years later, Felix will stand one lap of the track away from a historic tenth Olympic medal when she enters the starting blocks for what should be an exciting 400m final in Tokyo.
The event is one of several highly anticipated track and field finals on Day 13. The session, which begins at 3:50 a.m. PT, features six intriguing finals: women’s javelin throw, men’s 5000m, women’s 400m, women’s 1500m, women’s 4x100m relay and the men’s 4x100m relay.
Felix is making her fifth Olympic appearance in Tokyo and is hoping to add to her historic medal totals. She won silver in the women’s 400m in Rio and stands among the medal contenders in the event once again. Felix won gold (4×400 relay) and silver (200m) in Beijing and three golds (200m, 4x100m, 4x400m) in London.
A tenth medal would be enough to tie Carl Lewis’ overall Olympic record and pass Merlene Ottey of Jamaica for most in women’s track and field. Felix, the most decorated U.S. woman in track and field history, will run in the finals of the 400-meters, but at 35-years-old, she knows the task will be difficult.
“You get older,” said Felix, “and it seems like it’s harder.”
The U.S. men will be looking for their first Olympic gold in the 4x100m relay since 2000 and first medal of any kind since 2004. Team USA was represented on the men’s 100m podium with Fred Kerley winning silver, while Ronnie Baker placed fifth in the final. Trayvon Brommell, Micah Williams and Cravon Gillepsie will also look to help Team USA reclaim a podium finish.
The Jamaican women went a level above the American men in the 100m, sweeping the podium. Still, the American women come into the 4x100m final as the two-time defending Olympic champions and set the record at the 2012 London Games
Maggie Malone is the United States’ lone competitor in the women’s javelin final after she posted the second-best overall result in qualifying, trailing only Poland’s Maria Andrejczyk. Malone is making her second Olympic appearance and attempting to become the first American woman to medal in the event since 1976.
Paul Chelimo, who posted the second-fastest overall time in the men’s 5000m heats, will be joined by fellow American William Kincaid in the final, while there are no American racers in the women’s 1500m final.
Watch on Peacock, or stream live.
April Ross and Alix Klineman advance to the gold medal game after defeating Switzerland.
Undefeated April Ross and Alix Klineman Play for a Gold Medal in Beach Volleyball
Costa Mesa’s April Ross already has a silver medal and a bronze medal in her collection. Now, she has a chance to add gold.
Ross and partner Alix Klineman, Manhattan Beach, will take on Australian duo Mariafe Artacho and Taliqua Clancy in the women’s beach volleyball gold medal match at 7:30 p.m. PT on Thursday. The American duo is a perfect 6-0 in the tournament so far, losing only one set along the way. Ross and Klineman enter the final off the heels of a semifinal win over Switzerland’s Anouk Verge-Depre and Joana Heidrich.
A U.S. pair has stood atop the podium in three of the last four Olympics, but Ross has yet to claim a gold medal. With Klineman by her side, that can change Thursday night.
If gold: Watch on NBC’s primetime coverage, or stream live.
If bronze: Watch on NBC’s primetime coverage, or stream live.
U.S. women’s basketball advanced to the semifinals with its win over Australia. The win marks the team’s 53rd straight win, putting the U.S. two victories away from a seventh straight gold medal.
Team USA Tips Off Against Serbia in Women’s Basketball Semifinal
The U.S. women’s basketball has looked like a team determined to win its seventh straight Olympic gold medal so far in Tokyo.
After trailing heading into the second quarter of Wednesday’s quarterfinal matchup against Australia, Team USA took charge on its way to a 79-55 rout. The victory extended the team’s 53-game Olympic winning streak dating back to 1992 and put the team two wins away from another gold medal. Breanna Stewart continued her scorching Tokyo run with a game-high 23 points on 8-for-10 shooting.
Next up for Dawn Staley’s squad is a semifinal contest against Serbia, which went 2-1 in Group A play and handled China 77-70 in the quarterfinals. Serbia is looking for its second straight Olympic medal after earning bronze at the 2016 Rio Olympics.
Team USA is hoping to send Serbia back to the bronze medal game once again. Tipoff is at 9:40 p.m. PT on Thursday.
Watch on NBC, or stream live.
U.S. Volleyball Team Faces Serbia in Women’s Semifinals
The U.S. women’s volleyball team has overcome plenty of adversity in reaching the semifinals in Tokyo.
Two of the team’s top players, Jordan Thompson and Jordyn Poulter, went down during pool play with apparent injuries. Without two stars, the squad grouped together for a dominant quarterfinal win over Cuba on Wednesday. Andrea Drews stepped up at the net with 21 points, while Micha Hancock took Poulter’s spot as the facilitator and collected 37 assists.
Friday’s match, which begins at 9 p.m. PT, is a rematch of the semifinals in Rio. Serbia got the better of the U.S. last time, winning a tight contest in the fifth set. Serbia claimed silver, its first Olympic women’s volleyball medal, after falling to Brazil in the championship match.
Watch on USA Network, or stream live.