Familiar Kick Lifts Rogers to Tokyo Bronze
EUGENE, Ore. – Using a familiar kick down the home stretch, Raevyn Rogers raced her way to an Olympic bronze medal Tuesday evening—in Tokyo—in the final of the women's 800 meters. The former UO standout went from seventh to third over the final 100 meters and crossed in a personal-best time of 1:56.81 to become the sixth UO woman to medal at an Olympic Games.
With less than 100 meters to go, Rogers began passing runners with an eye on the finish line and, just before the tape, eclipsed Jemma Reekie of Great Britain to secure the third-place outing. The kick was reminiscent of Rogers' streak to silver at the 2019 World Championships where she moved from seventh to second down the stretch.
"Just being out there and being able to medal, it's a really big deal," Rogers said. "I think it's settling in. Just being able to take something back home…I'm really proud."
UO Women Olympic Medalists | track and field
1988 – Lisa Martin (AUS), marathon – silver
2012 – Keshia Baker (USA), 4x400 – gold
2016 – English Gardner (USA),4x400 – gold
2016 – Phyllis Francis (USA), 4x400 – gold
2016 – Brianne Theisen-Eaton (CAN), heptathlon – bronze
2020* - Raevyn Rogers (USA), 800m - bronze
Rogers finished behind American teammate Athing Mu (1:55.21) and Keely Hodgkinson (1:55.88) of Great Britain. Mu, who set a pending U.S. record, and Rogers are just the third and fourth American women to medal in the 800 meters, and first since Kimberley Gallagher did so in 1988.
Off their 1-2 finish at the U.S. Olympic Trials, three-time NCAA champion Cole Hocker and defending champion Matthew Centrowitz each advanced to the semifinals of the men's 1500 meters. Hocker, in his Olympics debut, held his spot among the lead pack throughout the opening heat and crossed in 3:36.16 for fourth to cruise into the next round. That time was fifth fastest overall across the three heats of the first round.
Centrowitz began his title defense with an automatic qualifying effort in heat two. Running at the front of the pack during the race, he eased through the finish line in 3:41.12 to secure his spot in the next round. The three-heat semifinal round is scheduled to begin Thursday at 4 a.m. (PT).
In another qualifying effort, Emmanuel Ihemeje finished ninth overall in the opening round of the men's triple jump. He got out to a best of 16.88m/55-4.75 in his first attempt of the day. The top-12 qualifiers will return to the track in two day's time for the event final. Ihemeje swept the indoor and outdoor NCAA titles for the Ducks this past season.
Devon Allen opened his second Olympics campaign with a victory in heat five. He stopped the clock in 13.21 for the third fastest of the round, behind only American teammate Grant Holloway (13.02) and Ronald Levy (13.17) from Jamaica. Allen, fifth at the 2016 Olympics in Rio, advances to the semifinals with his effort.
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