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US women swim for gold in freestyle relay

Ledecky, Schmitt, Smith, DiRado swim for USA

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The U.S. women successfully defended their 2012 Olympic title in the 4x200-meter freestyle relay, winning gold in Rio on Wednesday night.

Katie Ledecky, Allison Schmitt, Leah Smith and Maya DiRado posted a time of 7:43.03 in winning the final.

The medal was the fourth of the Rio Games for Ledecky, the third for DiRado and the second for Schmitt and Smith.

Australia won silver and Canada took bronze.

Earlier in the day, the team of Schmitt, Missy Franklin, Melanie Margalis, Cierra Runge posted the fastest overall time (7:47.77) in the semifinals to advance to Wednesday night's final.

By competing in the semis, Franklin earns her first medal of the Rio Games to go along with the four golds and one bronze she won four years ago in her Olympic debut in London.

Besides Franklin and Schmitt, the Olympic record-breaking 4x200m free team in 2012 also featured Dana Vollmer and Shannon Vreeland.