LONDON -- The storybook tale did not have the expected happy ending for the U.S. women’s volleyball team Saturday night. Ranked No. 1 -- and coached by Hugh McCutcheon, who had guided the U.S. men to the gold in Beijing over Brazil -- the women got outplayed and lost.
Brazil won by a final score of 11-25, 25-17, 25-20, 25-17.
It looked as if the U.S. women would run away with the gold-medal match when they dominated the first set and won, 25-11. But that appeared to mostly embarrass Brazil, which came storming back in the second set and won, 25-17.
McCutcheon did his best to rally the troops at 11-6 of the second set when he called a timeout and said: “We are getting outplayed. That’s one thing. But we shouldn’t be getting outworked.”
The U.S. women fought back to 12-12 on a kill by Logan Tom, but Brazil was off and running again. It was only the third set the U.S. women had lost in the entire tournament — 23 sets.