Ex-Wolverine Siobhan Haughey earns Hong Kong's first Olympic swimming medal

Detroit News

Siobhan Haughey (University of Michigan) won a silver medal in the women's 200-meter freestyle final and earned Hong Kong's first-ever swimming medal.

Australia's Ariarne Titmus set an Olympic record at 1:53.50, just .42 ahead of Haughey at 1:53.92. Canada's Penny Oleksiak took the bronze at 1:54.70.

Former Wolverine Siobhan Haughey of Hong Kong smiles after winning the silver medal in the women's 200-meter freestyle final at the 2020 Summer Olympics on Wednesday in Tokyo, Japan.

Haughey posted her best time by nearly a second and set a new Asian and Hong Kong record in the 200-meter freestyle.

Katie Ledecky didn’t even win a medal – the first time that’s ever happened to her at the Olympics.

Titmus conserved her energy over the first half of the race, then rallied to pass Ledecky with the second-fastest performance in history.

Ledecky wasn’t even close in the 200, making the first flip in seventh place and never getting higher than her fifth-place showing at the end. The defending Olympic champion finished in 1:55.21 – nearly 2 seconds behind the winner.

Ledecky faced a grueling morning that also included the final of the 1,500 free.

She was a big favorite for gold in that race, which is new to the women’s program this year, giving her a chance to quickly make up for the disappointment of the worst Olympic showing of her career.

Italy’s Federica Pellegrini of Italy finished seventh in her fifth and final Olympics. She won the gold in 2008 and is still the world-record holder.

There were no surprises in the men’s 200 butterfly, with Kristof Milak of Hungary romping to a dominating victory.

Milak won the the gold by about two body lengths, backing up his status as one of the biggest favorites at the Olympic pool.

He touched in an Olympic record of 1:51.25 – some 21/2 seconds ahead of the silver medalist, Japan’s Tomoru Honda, who finished in 1:53.73.

The bronze went to Italy’s Federico Burdisso in 1:54.45.

Madeleine Wanamaker, from left, Claire Collins, Kendall Chase, and Ann Arbor's Grace Luczak of the United States compete in the women's four final at the 2020 Summer Olympics on Wednesday in Tokyo, Japan.

Local Olympians

Ann Arbor's Grace Luczak (University of Michigan) finished in first place in the women's four rowing B final on Wednesday in Tokyo, Japan.

Luczak, Madeleine Wanamaker, Claire Collins and Kendall Chase posted a time of 6:33.65 for the United States.

The foursome won by 1.07 seconds to edge Denmark (Trine Dahl Pedersen, Christina Johansen, Frida Sanggaard Nielsen, Ida Goertz Jacobsen) with Romania (Madalina Heghes, Elena Logofatu, Cristina Popescu, Roxana Anghel) taking the bronze medal.

In the women's quadruple sculls B final, Flushing's Ellen Tomek (University of Michigan) finished in fourth place in a time of 6:30.03.

The United States' team (Cicely Madden, Alison Rusher, Meghan O'Leary) missed the podium by less than a second. Britain took the gold medal with New Zealand capturing the silver medal and France the bronze medal.

In men's basketball, Moritz Wagner (University of Michigan) scored 17 points in 12 minutes in Germany's 99-92 win against Nigeria in Group B.

Track and field

With no Usain Bolt on the track and no fans in the stadium, Sebastian Coe still believes his sport is in good shape heading into the track and field program at the Tokyo Olympics.

A potential superstar in the pole vault along with world record threats in both 400-meter hurdles races were cited Tuesday as likely highlights by the upbeat president of World Athletics.

“What does the sport look like post-Usain Bolt? Well, it looks healthy,” Coe said three days before track events start at the National Stadium.

For that, Coe offered “a heartfelt thank you” to the athletes after a 2020 season almost entirely lost because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“They have shown buckets of resilience and fortitude.

They have battled through with humor and honor,” the two-time Olympic 1,500-meter champion said.

“Under very straitened circumstances — which is what these Games are — we will have, I think, an outstanding track and field championships.”

TV ratings

If there’s going to be a surge in viewership interest in the Tokyo Olympics, NBC Universal is still waiting.

For three straight nights, viewership for the Tokyo Games has been down more than 30% compared to the Rio de Janeiro Olympics in 2016, and the network has been hit by a steady stream of bad news regarding American competitors.

The Nielsen company said 16.9 million people watched Sunday night’s coverage on NBC, down 43% from the corresponding night in Rio. Saturday’s audience of 12.6 million was down 39%.

The numbers improve slightly when alternatives are figured in: People could follow the Olympics Sunday night not just on NBC, but also on USA, NBCSN, CNBC and live streaming.

Adding in those alternatives lifts NBC’s “total audience delivery” that night to 20 million.