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Alekna Becomes Youngest-Ever World Medalist

Jul 19, 2022

EUGENE, OREGON – Two days after setting the championship qualifying round record on Sunday, Mykolas Alekna knew that he had more work to do – and he got the job done.

Barely out of his freshman season for California track & field, the NCAA record-holder and 2022 Lithuanian champion entered the men's discus final at the World Athletics Championships with the aim of becoming the youngest world discus medalist in history. It took him just four throws to accomplish his goal, whirling the platter 69.27m (227-3) to earn second place in a historically talented field and match fellow Golden Bear Camryn Rogers' highest-ever finish by a Cal athlete at the World Championships.

The 19-year-old led after the first round of throws, having reached a distance of 66.64m (218-7) but World No. 2 Kristjan Čeh of Slovenia unleashed a mark of 69.02m (226-5) to take control of the lead, which he never relinquished. Čeh then followed up with a championship-record throw of 71.13m (233-4) on his third attempt, while Alekna responded with the second-place throw that was just 0.54m (1-9) off his personal best.

Alekna's countryman Andrius Gudžius rounded out the podium with a third-place finish of 67.55m (221-7).
Men's Discus Final

  1. Kristjan Čeh (Slovenia) 71.13m/233-4
  2. Mykolas Alekna (Lithuania) 69.27m/227-3
  3. Andrius Gudžius (Lithuania) 67.55m/221-7
  4. Daniel Ståhl (Sweden) 67.10m/220-1
  5. Simon Pettersson (Sweden) 67.00m/219-9
  6. Matthew Denny (Australia) 66.47m/218-1
  7. Alin Alexandru Firfirica (Romania) 65.57m/215-1
  8. Alex Rose (Samoa) 65.57m/215-1
  9. Fedrick Dacres (Jamaica) 64.85m/212-9
  10. Lukas Weißhaidinger (Austria) 63.98m/209-11
  11. Sam Mattis (USA) 63.19m/207-3
  12. Traves Smikle (Jamaica) 62.23m/204-2