Olympics: Cal’s Kara Kohler rows to bronze

Cal student Kara Kohler earned a bronze medal Wednesday as she helped the United States to a third-place finish in the women’s quadruple sculls event at Dorney Lake.

It didn’t go quite as well for Cal alum and Piedmond native Zach Vlahos, coxswain of  the U.S. men’s eight boat, which finished fourth — one spot out of a medal. Heavy favorite Germany took the gold, with Canada second and Great Britain third, just 3/10ths of  a second ahead of the Americans.

Kohler, who grew up in Clayton and took a year off Cal this season to train with the national team, joined teammates Natalie Dell, Megan Kalmoe and Adrianne Martelli to finish with a time of 6 minutes, 40.63 seconds.

That was behind the winning boat from the Ukraine, which clocked in at 6:35.93 and second-place Germany.

This marked only the second time Germany failed to win Olympic gold in the event since it was added to the Olympic rowing schedule in 1988.

The experienced American boat, which needed to come through a repechage to reach the final, was neck and neck with the Germans until the last 500 meters when they started to tail off.

Jeff Faraudo