OMAHA, Neb. — Dara Torres lingered in the water after the other swimmers had climbed out of the pool.
Her long career was finally over.
She wanted to soak up the moment as long as possible.
The 45-year-old Torres came up short in her bid to make it to the Olympics for a sixth time. She finished fourth in the final of the 50-meter freestyle Monday night, her only event at the U.S. swimming trials.
“This is really over,” Torres said. “That’s it, I’m going to enjoy some time with my daughter, have a nice summer and cheer on the U.S. team.”
After winning three silver medals at the Beijing Olympics, Torres underwent radical knee surgery and put all her hopes into a chaotic dash from one end of the pool to the other. But Jessica Hardy won in 24.50 seconds, while Kara Lynn Joyce took the other Olympic spot in 24.73.
“Obviously I was hoping to make the team,” Torres said. “That was my goal and missing it by less than a tenth of a second is tough, but I don’t think there’s anything I could have changed.”
Torres was denied a trip to London by nine-hundredths of a second, also touching behind third-place Christine Magnuson (24.78). Torres smiled when she saw her time (24.82) and hugged Hardy and Joyce. When Torres finally got out, she began motioning for her daughter, 6-year-old Tessa, to join her.
In the last event of the eight-day trials, Andrew Gemmell won the grueling 1,500 freestyle in 14 minutes, 52.19 seconds. Connor Jaeger was right with him all the way, taking the second spot for London in 14:52.51.
MEN’S BASKETBALL: The U.S. plans to stick with its short-handed men’s Olympic basketball team – at least for now.
USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo said Monday he has no plans to make any additions to the roster, despite another wave of injuries.
“At this moment we do not have any plans to add anyone,” he said. “We may very well be seeking permission to add someone else.”
Even so, there’s no guarantee it would be granted. The Americans already were granted one extension by the U.S. Olympic Committee to add Anthony Davis and James Harden to their group of finalists after the deadline has passed for players to be entered in the drug testing pool.
Miami’s Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh have since pulled out with injuries, and Davis sprained his ankle Saturday in New Orleans.