Anja Niedringhaus, Associated Press
LONDON — One moment Morgan Uceny was in the middle of the pack, getting ready to make her move in the 1,500 meters.
The next, she was down and pounding her palms on the track in frustration.
Another major meet, another major fall for the American runner.
Uceny was tripped from behind on the last lap of the final Friday night, landing hard on her right knee and hip. She was in position to challenge for a medal, but her performance goes down as "DNF" — did not finish.
She was on her hands and knees, staring at the track in disbelief, when Asli Cakir Alptekin of Turkey won the race.
Shortly after, Uceny trudged off the track — blood dripping from her leg — and into the medical area. She left the stadium without speaking to reporters.
Last year at the world championships, Uceny, of Mammoth Lakes, Calif., entered the race as one of the top runners. But she became entangled just before the final lap and fell, all but ending her chances for a medal. She did pick herself up and finish a disappointing 10th.
This time, there was no getting up.
Uceny's fall was a reminder of what happened to Mary Decker Slaney, an overwhelming favorite to win gold in the 3,000 at the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. In one of the most memorable moments in Olympic history, Slaney collided with barefooted runner Zola Budd and tumbled to the track.
In tears, her eventual husband, British Olympic discus thrower Richard Slaney, helped her from the track.
No one was all that sure what happened to Uceny. She was comfortably cruising along before crashing to the ground. British runner Lisa Dobriskey was tucked in right behind Uceny and didn't get a good look at what took place.
"Too many bodies running together and too comfortably," Dobriskey said. "I think someone got tangled up with her. She just went flying — with quite a big bang.
"But it wasn't me that clipped her. It was just too many bodies."
- Jazz knock off Thunder in emotional game with...
- BYU defense has ‘a long ways to go’
- Former Jazz big man Enes Kanter goes off,...
- Utah State set to hire assistant Tim Duryea...
- Brad Rock: The unforgettable Hot Rod Hundley
- Photo gallery: BYU rugby blanks Utah State in...
- 5 things you may have missed at BYU...
- Dick Harmon: Nomadic hoops coach Tony Ingle...
- A not-so-Sweet 16 for the Runnin' Utes... 120
- Former Jazz big man Enes Kanter goes... 38
- Brad Rock: Utes shouldn't feel bad, in... 34
- Utes went down swinging in Sweet 16... 29
- BYU defense has ‘a long ways to... 24
- Jazz knock off Thunder in emotional... 21
- Dick Harmon: BYU's spring football... 21
- AP All-Americans: Utah's Wright named... 19