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Olympics / Team USA

Joe Kovacs Wins Silver in Shot Put

Defending World Champion Joe Kovacs was edged by teammate Ryan Crouser in the men’s shot put final, but still wound up with the silver medal.

Kovacs, of Bethlehem, PA, threw a solid 21.78m, but teammate Crouser threw a personal best and Olympic record 22.52m to take the gold. Crouser had beaten Kovacs at the U.S. Olympic Trials, after Kovacs had won at the 2015 World Championships, setting up a big duel between the top two Americans.

However, Kovacs was easily the favorite, being the owner of four of the best five throws in the world this year. On top of that, last season, he posted the eighth furthest throw of all-time, making him one of the best throwers of all-time.

Despite those stats, Crouser obviously came into the meet with more momentum, and put together the throw of his life. Kovacs put up his best throw on his first attempt, with the rest of his falling just short. He had one throw that may have measured close to Crouser’s, but one of his feet stepped outside of the ring during his follow through, nullifying the result.

Kovacs was originally coached by his mother in high school, and because his school didn’t even have a throwing circle, his mom painted one in the parking lot. He originally only began track & field in order to stay in shape for football, but his talent was so undeniable, that his mother sent him to be coached. He has said that he expects him, Crouser and Hill all to be back at the next Olympics, so their competitions will definitely be something to watch over the next four years.

Darby, PA native Darrell Hill also competed in the shot put, however he finished 12th in his group, finishing out of qualifying for the medal round after throwing a . He attended Penn State along with Kovacs.

Michelle Carter won the women’s shot put event earlier in the games, giving the United States their first double gold in the event in Olympic history. It was the first gold for the men since 2004, and it was the ninth consecutive games that a male has medaled.

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Dan is a Staff Writer here at DoubleGSports.com with a focus on Team USA and the Rio Olympics
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