Allen Finishes Fourth, Ducks Advance Two to Finals
EUGENE, Ore. – Devon Allen finished fourth in the finals of the 110-meter hurdles and the Ducks secured two more finalists spots on day seven of the athletics schedule in Tokyo. Aided by a UO school record, Cole Hocker advanced in the 1500 meters while English Gardner helped the United States' 4x100-meter relay move to the finals.
In the second Olympics final of his career, Allen crossed in a time of 13.14—his fastest time of the rounds—and just missed a spot on the podium. The top four runners were separated by just one tenth of a second. The gold went to Hansle Parchment (13.04) of Jamaica. With his performance, Allen improved on his fifth-place finish in 2016. It is the highest UO finish in the event since Martin Hawkins won bronze in 1912.
The morning session also featured preliminary heats of the 4x100-meter relays. Gardner, member of the gold-medal winning quartet in 2016, ran the third leg—as she did in Rio—to help the Americans advance to the final. She teamed with Javianne Oliver, Teahna Daniels and Aleia Hobbs for a time of 41.90, the second fastest of the rounds.
The final is scheduled for Friday at 6:30 a.m. (PT) on Peacock. As members of the relay pool, Gardner and Jenna Prandini—semifinalists in the 100 and 200 meters—are both eligible to run a leg.
In the men's relay, Cravon Gillespie ran the anchor leg for Team USA (38.10) that finished with the eighth-fastest time of the first round but Japan (38.16) advanced to the final by way of its third-place automatic qualifying finish in the second heat. The Americans were sixth in heat one, and missed the final at-large spot by two hundredths of a second.
Two-time NCAA champion Emmanuel Ihemeje finished 11th overall in the final of the men's triple jump. He got out to a day's best of 16.52m/54-2.5 in the second round. Ihemeje, in his Olympics debut, posted his best jump during the qualifying round—16.68m/55-4.75—to advance to Thursday's final.
Running in the first of two heats, Hocker finished second in a new lifetime best of 3:33.87, which surpassed the previous UO mark of 3:34.07 set by James West last September. Hocker's previous best of 3:35.28 came in his winning performance at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials.
Defending champion Matthew Centrowitz recorded a season-best time of 3:33.69 but with a ninth-place finish in the quicker second heat, he fell short of securing an at-large spot. In that same heat, Abel Kipsang of Kenya ran a time of 3:31.65 to set an Olympic record.
Hocker becomes the fourth UO man to advance to an Olympics final in the 1500 meters, joining a list that includes Centrowitz (2012, '16), Dyrol Burleson (1960, '64) and Jim Grelle (1960). The final will be run Saturday at 4:40 a.m. (PT).
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