Olympic Results 2012: Holley Mangold's Injury Main Culprit for Poor Performance

Eric Ball@@BigLeagueEballFeatured ColumnistAugust 6, 2012

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 05:  Holley Mangold of the United States competes during the Women's 75kg Weightlifting on Day 9 of the London 2012 Olympic Games at ExCeL on August 5, 2012 in London, England.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Rob Carr/Getty Images

A 10th place finish in the super-heavyweight division wasn’t exactly what Holley Mangold expected when she signed up to compete in weightlifting at the Olympic level, but she’ll leave London knowing her career has only begun. 

The sister of New York Jet Nick Mangold, Holley hoisted 105 kilograms (231 pounds) in the snatch, but hurt her hand in the process. She described to reporters how the injury occurred (via ESPN.com): “About two days before I left for London, I tore a tendon in my hand catching the clean wrong, and I think I retore it again today.”

It was a real shame that the Kettering, Ohio native injured the hand so early, as it hampered her for the remainder of the event. She was able to register a weight of 135 kg (297 lbs) in the jerk and clean for a 240 kg total (529 lbs). It was 30 pounds less than her best effort, and it was clear the main culprit was her hand.

China’s Zhou Lulu won the gold medal with an incredible combined weight of 333 kg (734 lbs), which was the fifth gold won by her country in weightlifting.

The 22-year-old Mangold told reporters that, because of the injury, she hadn’t lifted over 80 kg (176 pounds) in the last two-plus weeks. Naturally this was somewhat of a worst case scenario for Mangold, but after the results were announced she still sounded incredibly upbeat.

She’ll be 26 in the next Olympics, and will have much more experience in competition. The 5’8’’, 374-pound Mangold was an offensive linemen in high school before beginning her weightlifting career at Ursuline College. She was put on the fast track to the Olympics.

With four years of serious training under the guidance of coaches, there is no question Mangold could be one of the best in her weight by the time 2016 rolls around.

Her brother Nick was given permission to leave Jets’ training camp so he could watch his sister live. He also echoed a similar sentiment that the weightlifting career of his sister is far from over (via Associated Press):

“The fact that she has only been doing this for a handful of years and here she is on a world stage at the Olympics competing—I think that’s fantastic,’’ said Nick Mangold, who left training camp to see his sister compete.

‘‘She has the world in front of her. If she continues with it, I think she can do some great things.”

So, while finishing No. 10 might not be the ideal ending, the goal of winning Olympic gold is still there. Now she has the experience and additional drive to get back to the spotlight and take care of some unfinished business.

Let the countdown to the 2016 Games begin.