LONDON — Jennifer Suhr has been America’s best female pole vaulter for a while. Now she’s the best in the world.
Suhr rounded out her resume with Olympic gold, vaulting 15 feet, 7 inches to defeat Cuba’s Yarisley Silva, who cleared the same height but lost on a tiebreaker because she had one more miss in the competition.
Suhr also beat defending champion Yelena Isinbayeva, of Russia, who failed to become the first woman to win the same individual track and field event at three consecutive Olympics. Isinbayeva settled for bronze with a vault of 15-5.
Suhr had received lots of support from her husband, and coach, Rick Suhr.
“Before I went out here, he said, ‘You’re going to win this,’ ” Suhr said. “I’ve competed 100 times and that’s not something he says. It puts that extra spunk that I could do this. Someone else believes in me that much.”
Grenada’s Kirani James won the men’s 400 meters and 35-year-old Felix Sanchez, of the Dominican Republic, took the men’s 400-meter hurdles on a rainy night at Olympic Stadium. Other winners included Belarus’ Nadzeya Ostapchuk (women’s shot put) and Russia’s Yuliya Zaripova (women’s 3,000-meter steeplechase).
BEACH VOLLEYBALL: Jake Gibb and Sean Rosenthal were knocked out by Latvia.
The Americans won the first set 21-19, then dropped two straight to Martins Plavins and Janis Smedins, 21-18, 15-11.
WATER POLO: Norbert Hosnyanszky scored three times and Hungary beat the U.S. 11-6 to close out the preliminary stage.
VOLLEYBALL: David McKienzie scored 17 points and the defending champion U.S. men’s team clinched a top tournament seed with a win over Tunisia.
SHOOTING: American Matt Emmons won bronze in the 50-meter three-position rifle event.