A lot of what you'd see at the National Senior Games looks familiar if you've ever watched the Summer Olympics: There's track and field, basketball and swimming. At the Summer Olympics, however, you will not hear voices in the crowd cheering "Go, Grandma!"
Everyone at these games is over 50, and they play some sports that will likely never appear at the Olympics. Here's a sample:
Members of the U.S. national team, including Michael Parkhurst (#15) and Landon Donovan (#10) celebrate with Brek Shea, right after Shea scored the game-winning goal against Panama in Sunday's CONCACAF Gold Cup final.
Credit Jonathan Daniel / Getty Images
For more than an hour Sunday, the U.S. men's soccer team was stymied by Panama's efficient defense and their own tight play in the CONCACAF Gold Cup final. But less than one minute after substitute Brek Shea entered the game, he tapped the match's lone goal into the net and sealed the championship.
The 1-0 victory at Chicago's Soldier Field extended the Americans' winning streak to a record 11 games and opened the door to a possible U.S. appearance in the elite Confederations Cup in 2017. An announced crowd of nearly 58,000 attended the title match.
The Olympic motto - Faster, Higher, Stronger - has always applied to an ideal: a young, supremely fit athlete, performing wondrous tasks. The motto means something different for athletes over 50. Thousands of them are in Cleveland for the National Senior Games. These games may be lacking in youth and buff physiques, but NPR's Tom Goldman reports the event still has great significance for those are competing and watching.
Slow season for sports? Not one bit. It is the season for that favorite activity of couch potatoes - yacht racing. Also, in another elegant sporting arena, some unexpected lessons at this year's Dallas Cowboys training camp. Our teacher on all this, NPR's Mike Pesca. Hiya, Mike.
MIKE PESCA, BYLINE: Hi. Yachts and the Cowboys. That goes so well together.
STAMBERG: Yeah. So, the America's Cup right now - that's the prestigious yacht sail-off -and it seems that some of the racing boats are making some very serious waves, yes?
WERTHEIMER: The NFL season may still be a few months away, but soccer is in full swing, and the U.S. is making headlines. Plus, doping is back in the news - in baseball and cycling, although with a new twist.
NPR's Tom Goldman joins us now.
Let's start with soccer. Tomorrow, the U.S. Men's team plays in the Gold Cup final. So that'll be pretty exciting, right?
It's summertime, and on weekend nights all across the country, that means demolition derby time - cars bashing cars for the pure thrill of it. Charles Lane from member station WSHU recently went to a demo on New York's Long Island, the legendary home of the demolition derby. He brought back this audio postcard.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: Fire it up (unintelligible).
CHARLES LANE, BYLINE: A white four-door Chevy Impala. It's got graffiti writing down the side that says Misery Machine, and it's number 86.
Emile Griffith died this week at age 75. He was a world champion boxer, but he's best known for one of the sport's lowest moments. In 1962, at Madison Square Garden, Griffith was fighting Benny "The Kid" Paret and in the 12th round, Griffith pummeled Paret until he crumbled.
(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED SPORTSCAST)
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Paret goes down from pure exhaustion. Look at him there. Dr. Smith is coming over to look at him. Paret has collapsed from exhaustion from that beating on the ropes.
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel. One criticism of baseball is that it's too prone to long stretches of inaction, players sitting around not doing much. Well, if that's what baseball is, then Alex Rodriguez of the New York Yankees has been Mr. Baseball this season. He's been on the disabled list, but he claims he's healthy enough to play. His team begs to differ. Here to talk about the confusion is NPR's Mike Pesca, who joins us from New York. Hi, Mike.
Graham Johnston, 82, poses for a portrait through an underwater window at the pool on Wednesday. Graham competed at the Senior Games in Cleveland, where more than 10,000 athletes older than 55 are competing in various sports.
More than 10,000 athletes are meeting in Cleveland for The National Senior Games. Adults older than 55 — and some older than 90 — are running track, riding bikes, playing basketball and competing in many of the sports you might see at the Summer Olympics. In fact there are a few who were Olympians themselves back in the day who say they find that competition is just as satisfying in their later years.
One of those is 82-year-old swimmer Graham Johnston. When he's not racing or getting ready to race, he's in the stands, checking out the other swimmers with an expert eye.