After finishing fourth in the 200 meters on Thursday evening former NCAA champion Tyson Gay was eagerly waiting his turn to bring home a medal by taking the third leg of America’s gold-medal favorite 4×100-meter relay team. Unfortunately, Gay never had the chance to display his excellent ability to run the curve after the baton was dropped during the exchange between the first and second legs.
“I didn’t receive a medal in my individual event,” Gay said. “I was counting on a gold here, to take something home. Sometimes that’s the way things happen. It was real frustrating. When I competed on the relay at Arkansas we never lost a race. We never dropped a stick; we never got beat. I kind of take it personally, my leg anyway.”
Mardy Scales and Leonard Scott were unable to successfully complete the handoff in the preliminary heat, dashing any medal hopes for Team USA.
“I put all the blame on myself,” Scott said. “We can sit up here and say the stick was slippery or whatever, but the bottom line is that we practice on these sticks every day and we’re supposed to get through the zone. It slipped out of my hand. I was trying to pull for it and it slipped out of my hand. It’s my fault. I can’t even tell you how it even came out of my hand. It’s just too bad it had to happen today.”
Olympic silver medalist and former UA All-American Matt Hemingway became the only American to advance to the finals of the high jump when he came through when he absolutely had to in Group A of the qualifying round. He missed twice at 7-4.25 before clearing the bar on his third and final attempt. He missed his first two attempts at 7-5.25 before sailing over the bar safely to move on to the final Sunday night.
“I had to get a few jumps out of me,” Hemingway said. “I haven’t jumped much. This is only my third day of jumping since the U.S. Championships. So, it showed a little bit today. It’s kind of a hard test, I’m trying to figure out where my steps are completely after taking so much time off. I haven’t forgotten how to high jump, but I wanted to be smart and ready.”