Olympics 2012 medal count: Natalie Coughlin ties for most decorated U.S. female Olympian
Italy and the United States are tied for second place with five medals each -- two gold, two silver and a bronze for Italy and one gold, two silver and two bronze for the U.S. South Korea, Brazil and Japan are tied for third with three apiece. After that, there are thirteen countries that have earned one medal each.
Notable medals for the U.S. include Ryan Lochte's gold medal in the 400 IM, which was the first (and only) gold for the Americans. Also notable is the bronze medal in the women's 4x100 freestyle relay -- it tied Natalie Coughlin with Dara Torres and Jenny Thompson for most decorated U.S. female Olympian, summer or winter, with 12 medals. In case you were curious, Michael Phelps is the most decorated U.S. male with 16 medals.
Coughlin didn't swim in the 4x100 finals, but she did swim in the prelims to qualify the relay team for the finals, so she receives a medal as well. It was a difficult decision to bench her for the finals because she swam the fastest split in the prelims, but the four women who swam the finals all bested that split for the medal race, so perhaps it was the right decision.