Josh Davis came from behind in the last leg of the final relay Tuesday as the American swimmers moved the United States ahead of Japan in the World University Games gold medal races.
Japan, which had led in medals for the first five days, picked up one gold each in swimming and tennis. The Americans had two in swimming and one in tennis, putting them ahead 18 to 17 overall.The U.S. also led 51 to 48 in total medals.
China won four golds - three in diving and one in swimming - boosting its total to nine and moving it ahead of the eight of South Korea and the seven of Russia.
In men's basketball, the United States, seeking its fourth consecutive gold medal, advanced to the semifinals with a 105-81 blowout of Lithuania.
Georgetown guard Allen Iverson scored 21 points as the Americans joined the Czech Republic, Japan and Canada in the final four.
Track and field competition began, and Hungary and Romania won the first two events. Hungary also won gold in women's epee fencing.
Germany won a diving gold, and Brazil added one in swimming as Fernando Scherer reinforced his position as the games' fastest sprint swimmer.
Davis came out of the games with four gold medals - one in the men's 400-meter freestyle and three in relays, including the final 4 x 100-meter medley, in which the Americans broke a games record.
Japan led after three legs, but Davis anchored the U.S. quartet to a winning time of 3 minutes, 42.02 seconds, erasing the old mark of 3:42.99 set by another American quartet in 1985. Japan was second in 3:43.36.
The day's four other races all were decided by less than .2 seconds.
American Kristin Heydanek was just .08 ahead in winning the women's 100-meter backstroke over Japan's Yoko Koikawa, the 200-meter gold medalist.
With Tuesday's victories, the Americans came out with 16 gold medals in the games' 34 swimming events. Japan finished with seven.