- Associated Press - Tuesday, July 31, 2012

LONDON — In the first final of the night, American Allison Schmitt won the 200 freestyle with a dominating performance that left everyone else, including teammate Missy Franklin, battling for the other medals.

Schmitt won with an Olympic-record of 1:53.61. France’s Camille Muffat took silver in 1:55.58, almost a body length behind, while Bronte Barrett of Australia took the bronze over Franklin by a thousandth of a second. Barrett touched in 1:55.81. Franklin, who led after the first 50, was fourth in 1:55.82.

“I was just racing,” said Schmitt, who is quietly becoming one of the stars of the pool. “I knew I had to kick it. I just look at that scoreboard and see 53 and first place. I couldn’t be happier.”

She captured her first career gold medal, to go along with a silver in the 400 free and a bronze in the 4x100 free relay.

The 17-year-old Franklin was denied her third medal of the games, one night after her gutsy victory in the 100 backstroke earned her a tweet-out from pop star Justin Bieber.

“I was trying to do the best that I can,” said Franklin, who still has four more events in London. “I was in an incredible heat. I really wanted to go best time.”

 

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