Team USA women's eight crew near the finish line during heat 1 of the women's eight at Eton Dorney. (Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports)
WINDSOR, England (AP) - The United States held off Canada to win a second straight Olympic gold in the women's eight Thursday, maintaining its six-year dominance of the high-profile event.
The U.S. won in a time of 6 minutes, 10.59 seconds. Canada finished a half-length behind in second and the Netherlands took the bronze to close the second day of finals at Dorney Lake.
The U.S. hasn't lost a competitive race in the eight since winning the world title here in 2006, but Canada had closed the gap in the past 12 months, even qualifying for the final in a faster time in the heats.
The Americans successfully defended the title they won in the Beijing Games in 2008. The country's only previous Olympic gold in the discipline came at Los Angeles in 1984.
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