Nastia Liukin Edges US Teammate Shawn Johnson for Gold

Emily ThompsonCorrespondent IAugust 14, 2008

After a night of mishaps by the men, the women came into the all-around competition swinging.

Nastia Liukin, daughter of Soviet Union double-gold-medalist Valeri Liukin, captured gold. Nastia was born in Moscow, but at age 2 her father moved the family to the United States.

Shawn Johnson of Des Moines, Iowa came up just 0.600 points shy in taking silver, while Yilin Yang of China won the bronze.

Johnson fared well in every event but suffered in the uneven bars, earning a score 1.500 points behind Yang, who led with 16.725 points.

It all came down to the last event, floor. Yang went first out of Johnson and Liukin, and did the best she could. She had one small step after a tumbling pass, and bent knees in the air that cost her. She received a 15.000.

Liukin went next. Her routine, perfect. Her elegance and grace proved a major factor as she recorded a score of 15.525.

Now it was the World Champion in floor, Johnson's turn. During her routine, teammate Liukin was pacing, but also clapping and cheering Johnson on. Johnson also performed a perfect routine, matching Liukin's 15.525.

As the score flashed on the board, Liukin and her father/coach fought back the tears, and embraced before teammate Shawn Johnson came and gave Liukin a well deserved hug.

Vault Score:

Shawn Johnson, USA: 15.875

Yilin Yang, China: 15.175

Nastia Liukin, USA: 15.025

Uneven Bars Score:

Yilin Yang, China: 16.725

Nastia Liukin, USA: 16.650

Shawn Johnson, USA: 15.275

Balance Beam Score:

Nastia Liukin, USA: 16.125

Shawn Johnson, USA: 16.050

Yilin Yang, China: 15.750

Floor Score:

Nastia Liukin, USA: 15.525

Shawn Johnson, USA: 15.525

Yilin Yang, China: 15.000

Final Score:

Nastia Liukin, USA: 63.325

Shawn Johnson, USA: 62.725

Yilin Yang, China: 62.650

Congratulations to Liukin and Johnson, who outshined everyone. They deserved it.


The latest in the sports world, emailed daily.