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USC’s Olympic gold medal streak continues

Clement Lefert wins gold
From left, gold medallists Amaury Leveaux, Fabien Gilot, Trojan Clement Lefert and Yannick Agnel of France pose on the podium during the medal ceremony following the 400-meter freestyle relay. (Photo/Clive Rose, Getty Images)

Former Trojan All-American Clement Lefert won a gold medal as part of France’s 400-meter freestyle relay during the second day of swimming at the 2012 London Olympics on July 29, extending USC’s streak of winning at least one gold medal at every Summer Olympic Games since 1912.

Lefert, who competed for USC in 2010 and 2011, swam the third leg of France’s come-from-behind win in the relay.

In addition to Lefert’s gold, USC junior Vladimir Morozov won a bronze as part of Russia’s third-place team. Like Lefert, Morozov also swam the third leg and kept the Russians’ relay in the medal hunt.

Lefert’s gold medal is USC’s 124th and its 265th overall medal. USC also has 78 silvers and 63 bronze. Troy boasts 40 athletes at these Olympics (former, current and incoming), more than any other university in the United States.

Morozov also qualified for a spot in the semifinals of the 100-meter backstroke by tying for 10th in preliminaries in 54.01. Not a medal favorite in the event, he gave up his spot in the semifinals to save energy for his relay swim.

Meanwhile, former USC great Rebecca Soni, who won silver in the 100-meter breast in 2008, swam the second-fastest time in prelims (1:05.75) to earn a spot in the evening’s semifinals.

In the semifinals, she was second again in 1:05.98. Lithuania’s Ruta Meilutyte held the fastest time after both prelims and semifinals and will enter Monday’s final as the top seed with a 1:05.21.

Trojan sophomore Cristian Quintero, an All-American as a 2012 freshman and swimming in his second event for Venezuela, finished 22nd in the 200-meter freestyle (1:48.71), 0.8 away from earning a spot in the semifinals (top 16).

USC junior Lynette Lim, also an All-American in 2012 and swimming for Singapore at her second Olympics in a row, finished 30th in the 400-meter freestyle (4:18.64).

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USC’s Olympic gold medal streak continues

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