McPherson Makes Olympic Debut, Wins Bronze - NBC 6 South Florida
London 2012

London 2012

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McPherson Makes Olympic Debut, Wins Bronze

Paige McPherson beat out UK champ Sarah Stevenson for the Bronze



    McPherson Makes Olympic Debut, Wins Bronze
    Paige McPherson

    Olympic track and field does it again - putting on an epic show in less than one minute.

    On Friday, the world watched Team USA go up against some of the world's fastest runners; and saw a rising South Florida Tae Kwon Do star make her Olympic debut.

    There were at least two things to brag about Friday - the USA’s now world record-breaking women 400-meter relay team and Miami Olympian Paige McPherson's major upset in taekwondo.

    One after another, Team USA whizzed around the Olympic stadium track, powered, they say, by the crowd.

    “It's electric in here; it's contagious as well,” Team USA track and field runner Bianca Knight said. “It makes you just want to get out there and fight for your country, and put up a good performance.”

    Carmelita Jeter, Allison Felix, Tionne Madison, and Bianca Knight - together - erased a near 30-year record with their time of 40.82 seconds by almost a half second.

    Friday marks the team's first win since 1996.

    US Women Set Relay Record

    “It's my first Olympics, and you go away with the world record, and it's almost like, what more can you do?” Tianna Madison said. “So, I'm definitely looking forward to doing this again.”

    “I honestly was confused when I saw the time. I was like, that, okay, that is the world record, wow,” Allison Felix said.

    Big enough for their rivals, Team Jamaica, to see too. The team to beat finished second.

    Jeter anchored for the US -- bringing the baton and the win across the finish.

    “We had the chemistry and all we had to do is get the stick around, you know?,” Jeter said. “I knew every woman was going to run their leg with their heart and soul. So, when I got the stick, I said, okay, it's my turn.”

    University of Miami alum Lauryn Williams ran the 400 in the prelims, but not the finals.

    But, her team says, she'll earn her first relay medal for lifting the team to the finals.

    Williams had been part of two, disastrous baton exchange misfires that cost USA wins in 2004 and 2008.

    Back on the mat, McPherson, now a Bronze medal winner, is on her way to the history books.

    “I'm just so happy to even be here, to be a part of this huge experience,” she said.

    At just 21, McPherson beat out UK world Tae Kwon Do champ Sarah Stevenson, despite Stevenson's home court advantage.

    “Yeah, I was kind of nervous because of the crowd, and everything. But, when I saw my family, and my boyfriend, and my teammates, you know, I just zoned on them, and their cheering for me,” McPherson said.

    U.S. Women Outperformed Men in London