IN ORBIT: Oribe Peralta helped make sure the planets were aligned in Mexico’s favor on Saturday. Photo courtesy Jeff J. Mitchell/Getty Images

This is it! Today is the LAST day of the Olympic games. Are you a little worn out? So are we, but some of the best Olympic action in these games has been and will be played this weekend. In between the lines right there, I was saying you can’t let up now!

Take Saturday for example. The world’s biggest sport played their gold medal match for the world’s biggest athletic tournament. I don’t think there’s any understating how huge that was, and yet it was only one of several headlines that came out of London on Saturday. Let’s take a look.

Mexico Wins First Football Gold, Brazil Wonders What Went Wrong Again

Yes, I called it football gold. That’s because that’s what the WORLD calls the sport. More importantly, that’s what these Olympic Games calls the sport. And that’s good enough for me.

Mexico took the gold medal match 2-1 over international powerhouse Brazil after the two teams eliminated South Korea and Japan in the semifinals. For Mexico, it was their first gold medal in any Olympic games. A nation always very much captivated by the sport, Mexican soccer fans will be the first to admit this victory was long overdue.

But for Brazil, the loss was an all too familiar story. Despite its prominence in the sport globally, the lone Portuguese-speaking nation in South America actually has never won a gold medal either. Unlike Mexico, though, Brazil has had plenty of opportunities.

The hero for Mexico was Oribe Peralta. He scored both goals for Mexico, the first of which came just 29 seconds into the match. Out of the opening kick, Brazil made a moderate mistake that proved to be catastrophic simply because Peralta exploited it so beautifully as he put the ball in the back of the net via the low corner. He then scored again in the 75th minute to give his homeland a 2-0 lead.

Givanildo Vieira de Souza, or simply known as Hulk, put Brazil on the board with a goal in the first minute of injury time, but by then it was too late.

 

EDGED OF GLORY: Ryan Bailey and the USA posted a world record time, the only problem is Usain Bolt and the Jamaicans did it faster. Photo courtesy Matt Dunham/AP

Bolt Rounds Out Games in Typical Fashion

When Usain Bolt is handed the baton and an even start, you pretty much know what’s going to happen.

That was the story Saturday night in the Men’s 4X100 Relay. It was Usain Bolt’s last medal event of these games and it was turning into what would be a juggernaut matchup between the Jamaicans and Americans. Yes, there were eight teams at the starting line, but the 80,000 eyes in Olympic stadium were only watching two.

The United States got a tremendous start out of the blocks and was leading the race at the first handoff. But at the second transition Jamaican sprinter Michael Frater made an impeccable handoff to Yohan Blake, who proceeded to take the baton and run down Tyson Gay in the third leg. The end result was American and Jamaican anchors Ryan Bailey and Usain Bolt getting their teams’ batons virtually at the same time with nothing but a straight shot to the finish. Like I said, we all know how that ends.

Jamaica crushed the World Record and turned in an official time of 36.84 seconds, making the record broken by the US ladies in the same event the night before (40 seconds and change) look downright slow. That’s not to take anything away from the ladies, though. This Jamaican foursome is just that good.

And when I mean good, I mean GOOD. The US finished with a time of 37.04 seconds, which, had they won, would’ve also been a new world record. Instead, they weren’t even the fastest team in their race because the Jamaican sprinters were just that much faster.

Brazil Plays Coy, Slaughters USA

If you turned off the women’s volleyball final after the first set, an argument can be made that you had good reason to. The American women finished off the Brazilians in pool play and their drumming of the same team in the first set of the gold medal match was even more lopsided. Brazil’s play was abysmal and Team USA was cruising. But, if you turned off the women’s volleyball final after the first set, you’re going to be totally surprised to hear what happened.

Apparently the Brazilian squad is a bunch of hustlers, because they absolutely mopped the floor with the Americans the next three sets. I mean it never even really seemed close, folks. The last beating I saw that bad was in boxing, and the victim was a lifeless heavy bag.

Okay, maybe I’m exaggerating, but there’s no denying it wasn’t pretty. Some wondered if the Brazilians could reclaim their status as the world’s best team, and the ladies gave their doubters strong arguments right up until they ended it all.

 

ALL IS FARAH: Mo Farah has become an unassuming hero of the games to the host nation. Photo courtesy Michael Steele/Getty Images

Mo For Mo: Farah Doubles Down on Distance Running Crowns

The first gold medal Mo Farah won at these games, he was just a face in the crowd. No, he didn’t win his race narrowly or even somehow fail to standout compared to others who didn’t medal. The reason Mo’s first triumph was drowned out is because it came on what is now being called ‘Super Saturday’, the day a week from yesterday when Great Britain stormed the podiums in London and racked up medal after medal.

Don’t worry, Mo Farah got his second time to shine THIS Saturday.

After winning the Men’s 10,000 Meters last Saturday, Farah took gold in the 5,000 Meters yesterday and has almost instantly become one of the premier heroes of these games to the host nation. To put it into perspective, Mo Farah himself equated his experience to being a star football player, something that would obviously carry tremendous weight in the UK.

Even more amazing is the fact that Farah’s story is not simply just one of triumph, but of resiliency. Four years ago in Beijing, Mo Farah failed to even make it out of the first round of the same event. While he wasn’t necessarily a medal favorite by any means, his early exit was nonetheless embarrassing.

So if there is one man that has gone from zero to hero in the span of the four years between these two Olympic games, it is without a doubt Mo Farah. And, with his adopted home nation — he was born in Somalia — hosting the games, the timing couldn’t be more impeccable for the distance runner.

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NOTE: This story was originally published on SportsHead, where it originated. To read this article and others, click here.
When Bryan isn’t writing, he is on Twitter! Make sure you give him a follow @bclienesch!