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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Thurs., Aug. 21)

The Olympics again were ratings gold for NBC and NBC5 --- and not just in prime-time.

The local station also scored with its live and expectedly gushy late afternoon telecast of homegirl Nastia Liukin's DFW Airport press conference. Beginning just after 4:30 p.m. Thursday, it propelled the second half of NBC5's 4 p.m. newscast to a comfortable win in total homes and among two key advertiser targets, 18-to-49-year-olds and 25-to-54-year-olds.

The 18-year-old Parker gymnast and a yahooing crowd sprinkled with a few yahoos drew 129,087 D-FW homes opposite regularly scheduled syndicated entertainment programming on Fox4, WFAA8 and CBS11. Judge Judy on Fox4 took the silver with 99,860 homes from 4:30 to 5 p.m.

But it wasn't nearly as close in the two demographic darlings. NBC5 and Nastia more than doubled any of its rivals' ratings in the 18-to-49 and 25-to-54 Nielsens.

Thursday's nighttime Olympics coverage, climaxed by a live beach volleyball final that stretched from 10 to 11:12 p.m., averaged 382,380 homes overall.

The gold medal win by the USA duo of Todd "The Professor" Rogers and Phil "Thin Beast" Dalhausser drew a slightly higher 389,696 homes. Olympic audiences peaked between 9:45 and 10 p.m., when 496,862 homes watched.

WFAA8 again won the downsized 10 p.m. local news races in both total homes and with 25-to-54-year-olds, the main advertiser target audience for news programming.

NBC5 ran first at 6 a.m. in total homes and shared the gold with WFAA8 among 25-to-54-year-olds.

The Peacock ran the table at 5 and 6 p.m., with Fox4 a close second in both ratings measurements at the earlier hour.