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US teen Lydia Jacoby wins gold medal in 100 breaststroke at Tokyo Olympics, pulling off huge upset

USA TODAY SPORTS logo USA TODAY SPORTS 7/27/2021 Christine Brennan, USA TODAY
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TOKYO – Alaskan teen Lydia Jacoby pulled off a shocking upset in the women’s 100-meter breaststroke, becoming the first American woman to win gold in swimming in these Olympics. 

a woman with a racket: Lydia Jacoby celebrates after winning the women's 100-meter breaststroke final during the Tokyo Olympics. © Rob Schumacher, USA TODAY Sports Lydia Jacoby celebrates after winning the women's 100-meter breaststroke final during the Tokyo Olympics.

She beat U.S. teammate Lilly King, who was chasing her second consecutive Olympic gold in the 100 breaststroke.

Jacoby, 17, won in 1:04.95 followed by Tatjana Schoenmaker from South Africa, who was .27 of a second back. 

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King took bronze, the third Olympic medal of her career, finishing .59 of a second behind Jacoby.

“I was definitely racing for a medal," Jacoby said after her race. "I wasn’t really expecting a gold medal so when I looked up at the scoreboard it was insane.”

King was the favorite going into the race but celebrated her young teammate's victory. "I’m surprisingly OK right now and very happy with my race," King saiSo excited for Lydia. I love to see the future coming up like this.”

Jacoby is the first Olympic swimmer and only the 10th Summer Olympian to be born in Alaska.

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From Seward, Alaska, a two-hour drive from Anchorage, Jacoby was one of Team USA’s Olympic trials surprises, swimming nearly three seconds faster than her best time prior to the pandemic to finish second to King to qualify for Tokyo. 

She is one of 11 teenagers, 10 of them young women, on the U.S. Olympic swimming team.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: US teen Lydia Jacoby wins gold medal in 100 breaststroke at Tokyo Olympics, pulling off huge upset

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