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ATLANTA 1996

Life in the Fast Lane

July 21, 1996

On the first day of Olympic competition in Atlanta, America's swimmers came up high and dry when it came to gold medals. Silver medals on Saturday went to Jeremy Linn in the 100-meter breaststroke and Allison Wagner in the 400-meter individual medley. Angel Martino of Americus, Ga., the oldest U.S. Olympic swimmer in 72 years, won the bronze in the 100 freestyle as hometown fans cheered her on. She waved as she received her medal and, a few minutes later, handed it to a friend who is suffering from cancer. The gold medalists were China's Le Jingyi (in the 100 freestyle); Belgium's Fred Deburghgraeve (100 breaststroke), who set a world record in qualifying; Ireland's Michelle Smith (400 IM); and New Zealand's Daniel Loder (200 freestyle). Things went a little better for the U.S. in boxing with victories by Fernando Vargas and Zahir Raheem. The U.S. men's gymnastics team had a surprisingly good day, finishing fifth in the compulsories, the baseball team defeated Nicaragua and the men's soccer team gave Argentina a scare before losing. In basketball, the Dream Team was wondering how by many points it would defeat Argentina, and the women's team was preparing for today's opener against Cuba.

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