Leading Off: Many golden images from London Olympics

08/13/2012 12:00 AM

01/24/2014 1:58 PM

It'll be hard to forget Queen Elizabeth II – actually a stunt double – parachuting into Olympic Stadium during the Opening Ceremony and a video of John Lennon singing "Imagine" during Sunday night's finale.

But during the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, it was numerous golden moments by United States teams and athletes that will carry us until the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro:

Four-time Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps retiring with 22 medals, including 18 gold. Both are records.

Gabby Douglas, 16, becoming the first African American to win gold in women's all-around gymnastics and leading the Fab Five to the team gold medal.

While pressured by two younger U.S. competitors, thirtysomethings Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh Jennings winning a third gold medal in beach volleyball.

Redding native Megan Rapinoe waving with tears in her eyes and gold around her neck with her women's soccer teammates.

Sacramento native Mary Whipple being tossed into Dorney Lake after the coxswain led the women's eight crew to the gold medal.

The men's basketball team living up to expectations.

In the 40th year of Title IX, women winning more gold medals than the men (29-17) and more overall medals (58-45).

Medal leaders

Team G S B T

United States 46 29 29 104

China 38 27 22 87

Russia 24 25 33 82

Britain 29 17 19 65

Germany 11 19 14 44

See Scoreboard on Page C5 for complete medal standings.

Today's poll

Which U.S. Olympic team or athlete was the top story?

Michael Phelps

Women's soccer

Gabby Douglas

Men's basketball

Women's dominance

Vote above or leave your comments in the comments field; or go to www.sacbee.com/sports

Weekend poll results

What grade would you give NBC for its Olympics coverage?

A: 10%

B: 21%

C: 24%

D: 23%

F: 23%

Total votes: 381

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