London Olympics 2012: Top 6 Storylines to Follow on Day 14

Darin Pike@darinpikeContributor IAugust 9, 2012

London Olympics 2012: Top 6 Storylines to Follow on Day 14

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    Day 14 of the 2012 Summer Olympics will be doling out more gold medals in an array of competitions. Several team sports will play their semifinal games, setting up gold medal matches for the end of the Games.

    Friday isn't quite as heavy a day for the men in track and field, but one of their relays will be finished while the final field in another will be decided.

    The women have four opportunities to grab gold medals, though, including one of their relay events.

    The following slides provide an overview on all the Olympic action tomorrow, along with some information on the bigger confrontations.

6. BMX Cycling Finals

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    Sport: Cycling

    Event: BMX Finals, men and women

    Time:  11:30 am ET

    The men's and women's BMX cycling competitions will be held on Friday. Qualifying matches were held on Wednesday.

    South Africa's Sifiso Nhlapo was a finalist in 2008 and was a podium favorite in London. However, he chose to play it safe in qualifying races, likely of being taken out in a crash in the final in Beijing. He failed to reach the quarterfinals. 

    Heat 3 of the quarterfinals had a massive pileup, with every rider except New Zealand's Marc Willers being taken out.

5. Men Reach for Gold Medal Game in Basketball

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    Sport: Men's Basketball

    Event: Semifinal Games

    Time:  Noon and 4:00 pm ET

    Spain vs. Russia, 12:00 noon ET

    Spain has been the overwhelming favorite to advance to the gold medal game, but Russia has come on strong in the 2012 Games. The two met in Group B play with 3-0 records, with Russia escaping with a close win.

    The Gasol brothers will need to step up in this semifinal matchup if they wish to play the U.S. for the gold medal. Well, assuming the new Dream Team can win their semifinal game.

    Argentina vs. Team USA, 4:00 pm ET

    The United States has one more step in their reclamation project known as men's Olympic Basketball. Following their nightmare performance in Athens, critics have been looking for an opportunity to pounce.

    Thus far, Team USA has been untouchable over the final 10 minutes of play, turning several close games into blowouts. Argentina figures to be their next victim in their way of Olympic gold. 

4. Men's Soccer: Bronze Medal Match

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    Sport: Men's Football (Soccer)

    Event: Bronze Medal Match

    Time:  2:45 pm ET

    South Korea faces Japan for the bronze medal in men's soccer. 

    South Korea reached the semifinals with an upset shootout win over Great Britain in the quarterfinals. They lost to Brazil 3-0, landing them in the bronze medal match.

    Japan cruised in the quarterfinals, beating Egypt 3-0. They lost to a surging Mexico side in the semifinals, though, leaving them playing for the bronze medal.

    This game is a rematch of the Asia Cup last year, which Japan won on penalty kicks.

    There are several key matchups in this game, as discussed by Bleacher Report writer, Ed Wyman.

3. Men's Boxing, Semifinals in All 10 Classes

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    Sport: Boxing

    Event: Men's Semifinals

    Time:  Start at 8:30 am ET

    Friday is a boxing lovers dream, so long as they don't rely on having an American to root for. The U.S. men are out of the competition, but there will be 20 semifinal bouts held on Friday.

    These bouts will set up Saturday's finals.

    8:30 am

    Men's Lt. Fly (49kg/108 lbs)

    9:00 am 

    Men's Bantam (56kg/123 lbs)

    9:30 am 

    Men's Lt. Welter (64kg/141 lbs)

    10:00 am

    Men's Middle (75kg/165 lbs)

    10:30 am

    Men's Heavy (91kg/201 lbs)

    3:30 pm 

    Men's Fly (52kg/114 lbs)

    4:00 pm 

    Men's Light (60kg/132 lbs)

    4:30 pm 

    Men's Welter (69kg/152 lbs)

    5:00 pm 

    Men's Lt. Heavy (81kg/178 lbs)

    5:30 pm 

    Men's Super Heavy (+91kg)

2. Full Schedule in the Olympic Stadium

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    Sport: Track and Field

    Event: Men's 4x400-meter relay final

    Time:  4:20 pm ET

    There is a full slate of action on Friday, culminating in the 4x400 relay. The U.S. will press for the gold medal after failing to place a single runner in the individual finals.

    The Bahamas figured to run well after placing two runners in the individual finals. They tied the U.S. men in their heat of Round 1, with both teams logging their best time of the year of two minutes and 58.87 seconds.

    Belgium only managed a fourth-place finish in Heat 2 but still advanced to the final heat. 

    Trinidad and Tobago and Great Britain both finished Heat 2 with a time of 3:00.38 seconds.

    Other medal events on Friday include:

    2:00 pm: Men's pole vault final

    2:35 pm: Women's hammer throw final

    3:05 pm: Women's 5,000-meter final

    3:40 pm: Women's 4x100-meter relay final

    3:55 pm: Women's 1,500-meter final

1. Jordan Burroughs Looks to Extend His Undefeated Streak

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    Sport: Freestyle Wrestling

    Event: Men's 55- and 74-kilogram (121 and 163 lbs) Classes

    Time:  Start at 8:00 am ET

    One of the big stories in freestyle wrestling is the dominance of Jordan Burroughs.

    He is 34-0 as a professional freestyle wrestler and looking to add an Olympic gold medal to his 2011 World Championship title.

    He sees the London Games as just the next step in his five-year plan that includes winning every major tournament through 2017 and then jumping into mixed martial arts.

    He's been fully enjoying his first Olympic experience and is a great follow on Twitter.

    All weighed in and ready to scrap tomorrow!!!

    — Jordan Burroughs (@alliseeisgold) August 9, 2012

    Sam Hazewinkel will represent the United States at 121 lbs. He won at the 2012 team trials after coming just short in his prior two attempts.

    The full slate of action on Friday:

    8:00 am: Qualification round

    8:30 am: Round of 16

    9:30 am: Quarterfinals

    10:00 am: Semifinals

    12:45 pm: 55-kg bronze medal finals

    12:54 pm: 74-kg bronze medal finals

    2:03 pm: 55-kg gold medal final

    2:48 pm: 74-kg gold medal final