As the Olympics wind down, the major team sports are dominated by the USA (women’s basketball team won gold once again) as the United States continued to increase its overall medal haul by nearly double the next highest medal count – USA’s 120 to China’s 70.
But the highlight for Day 15 didn’t come in the form of a team-based win, but rather, an individual feat back on the track, in the men’s 1500-meter final. American Matt Centrowitz had studied his competition for months, gaining an insight into their favorite moments in the event, like where they timed their moves and when they light to turn on the after burners. All of Centrowitz’s hardcore study and obsessive planning paid off as he managed to lead practically the entire event.
Things started to kick into high gear as Centrowitz experienced a serious challenge from Kenya’s Asbel Kiprop in the final 100 meters, but as soon as Kiprop made his move, Centrowitz decided it was time to make his final push. Centrowitz managed to outpace the event’s previous two Olympic champs – Kenya’s Asbel Kiprop and Algeria’s Taoufik Makhloufi. Centrowitz’s effort was the United State’s first gold medal in the event in 108 years, when Mel Sheppard won gold at the London 1908 Olympics.
While the historic win is an obvious highlight for Centrowitz – being his first career gold as well as the 108 years – but even more so when you consider the fact that Centrowitz’s father, Matt Centrowitz Sr. was a distance runner who managed represent the United States at the 1976 Games, but never got the chance to hear the United State’s National Anthem on the medal podium, so Centrowitz Sr.’s pure joy as his son ran his victory lap was the highlight of Day 15, without a doubt.