LONDON (CNN) -- Usain Bolt is used to doing things no other man has ever accomplished on the track. On Thursday he added to his impressive resume with a second consecutive Olympic 200 meters title, becoming the first man to ever win showcase sprint events -- the 100 and 200 meters -- in consecutive Olympics.
As the Jamaican made his history, the U.S. women's football team got revenge for its loss in the 2011 World Cup final, beating Japan 2-1 to win its third consecutive Olympic gold medal and fourth overall.
Carli Lloyd scored twice for the United States, which also got a spectacular late-game save from goalie Hope Solo to preserve the win.
Canada defeated France in the closing moments of their bronze-medal game to take the third spot on the podium, with the winning goal from the boot of midfielder Diana Matheson.
At Olympic Stadium, Bolt, running in an outside lane, came off the turn well ahead going down the home stretch.
"It's what I came here to do. I'm now a legend," Bolt said. "I'm also the greatest athlete to live. I am in the same category as (former U.S. sprinter) Michael Johnson."
Johnson won four Olympic gold medals, but ran the 200 and 400 meters.
Bolt's countrymen Yohan Blake and Warren Weir earned the silver and bronze.
American Ashton Eaton won the decathlon while teammate Trey Hardee was second.
History was made in the boxing ring Thursday, as Great Britain's Nicola Adams became the first woman ever to win an Olympic gold and Team USA's Claressa Shields followed with the middleweight title.
"I think I will wear (the gold medal) every day for the first year," Shields said.
Adams' triumph in the flyweight final over China's Ren Cancan was greeted by ear-splitting screams of delight by the home crowd.
"It sounds really good, it's like a dream come true," Adams said. "I've wanted this all my life and it's finally come true. I'd really like to thank all the supporters here and elsewhere. I'm so happy and overwhelmed with joy right now."
Shortly after, Ireland's Katie Taylor came out on top in the first Olympic women's lightweight final, making a spirited comeback in the last round to beat Russia's Sofya Ochigava by 10 points to 8.
Taylor fell to her knees in joy and relief as the victory was announced, giving her country its first gold medal of the Games, before doing a lap of honor around the ring draped in the Irish flag.
Shields' 19-12 victory against Russia's Nadezda Torlopova is a remarkable achievement for the 17-year-old from Flint, Michigan -- and makes her the first American woman to take an Olympic boxing gold.
Flyweight Marlen Esparza, from Texas, took a bronze.
Women's boxing was an exhibition sport in the 1904 Olympics in St. Louis but only made its debut as a full Olympic event at the London 2012 Games. It has proved hugely popular with the crowds and seen skillful sparring in the ring, defying the critics who argued boxing was a man's game.
There was disappointment in the Olympic Stadium earlier Thursday for those hoping to see South Africa's Oscar Pistorius, the first double amputee to compete at the Games, run in the 4 x 400-meter relay.
The baton never reached the hands of the man nicknamed the Blade Runner, for the artificial blades on which he runs, after the second South African runner, Ofentse Mogawane, fell before he could pass it over.
However, in a dramatic turn of events, the South African team was reinstated on appeal and will contest the final Friday, after officials accepted that Mogawane had fallen as a result of obstruction by a Kenyan runner.
Pistorius was delighted by the turnaround in his team's fortunes, the official Olympic website reported.
"It's been absolutely phenomenal, just stepping out there again today on the track in front of a crowd like this has been awesome. This whole experience has just been mind-blowing for me," he is quoted as saying.
And the relay final won't be the last time for the crowds to see Pistorius in action, as he's set to return in the Paralympic Games later this summer to defend his 100-meter, 200-meter and 400-meter titles.
Trinidad and Tobago won the first 4 x 400-meter relay heat, with Great Britain and Cuba in second and third. Team USA, the defending champions, and Russia also qualified for the final, as did the tiny Caribbean nation of the Bahamas.
Venezuela also made it into the relay final on appeal, meaning nine teams will contest the final for the first time.
At North Greenwich Arena, site of the basketball tournaments, the American women earned a spot in the gold medal game, beating fierce rival Australia 86-73. They will meet the winner of the Russia vs. France contest.
Over at Greenwich Park on day 13 of the Games, Great Britain's Charlotte Dujardin, took gold in the individual dressage final, only two days after
helping Team GB win the team dressage gold for the first time.
Dujardin, who only started riding in top level dressage competitions last year, held the Dutch rider Adelinde Cornelissen to silver. Team GB's Laura Bechtolsheimer took bronze and compatriot Carl Hester, who trains Dujardin on her horse Valegro, took fifth.
The latest successes cap a remarkable Games for Britain's equestrian competitors, who have also taken medals in show jumping and eventing.
The U.S. women's volleyball team made it through to the final with a win over South Korea, where it will face either Japan or Brazil.
Beach volleyball queens Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh Jennings made it three Olympic golds in a row Wednesday, as they pushed their American rivals April Ross and Jennifer Kessy into silver position.
Also Wednesday, LeBron James became the first men's basketball player to have a triple double in an Olympics game. He scored 11 points, had 14 rebounds and 11 assists to lead the U.S. into the men's semifinals against Argentina.
Hopes were high for Team GB's Keri-Anne Payne, the 10-kilometer open water world champion and Beijing silver medalist, to repeat her success in the Serpentine lake in Hyde Park.
After a hard-fought two-hour race Payne could only manage fourth, though, with gold going to Hungary's Eva Risztov and silver to America's Hayley Anderson.
Thousands of spectators gathered in the sunshine on the banks of the lake, more usually home to swans and geese, to watch the grueling swimming marathon.
Thrills and spills returned to the swooping bumps and turns of the BMX park Thursday, as the men's BMX racing quarterfinals got under way. The event is novel for many spectators as it was only added to the Olympic program in Beijing.
Earlier, Germany took two golds in a busy morning on the waters of Eton Dorney lake.
One went to Franziska Weber and Tina Dietze, who clinched top spot in the women's kayak double (K2), with Hungary in silver and Poland taking bronze.
The other was won by German duo Kurt Kuschela and Peter Kretschmer, who triumphed in the men's kayak double (K2) 1,000-meter canoe sprint final.
After a slow start, Australia is now climbing the medal table. Their latest victory came courtesy of Tate Smith, Dave Smith, Murray Stewart, and Jacob Clear, who took gold in the men's kayak four (K4) 1,000-meter canoe sprint.
Danuta Kozak took gold for Hungary in the women's kayak single (K1) 500-meter final.