Walker's Pace: Eaton, Rupp Lead Banner Day in London
Wednesday, August 8, 2012
Wednesday was a banner day for Oregon alums at the London Olympics.
Ashton Eaton leads the decathlon after the first day, Galen Rupp qualified for the finals of the men's 5,000 meters and Zoe Buckman and Cyrus Hostetler had solid showing in their first ever Olympic Games.
Eaton, the world record-holder competing in his first Olympics, leads the decathlon with 4,661 points, 220 ahead of fellow American Trey Hardee who has 4,441.
"It is decent," said Eaton. "I am in good point position. I'm above the other guys. I've got solid events tomorrow, so I'm okay with it."
Eaton got out of the gate with an Olympic record 10.35 seconds in the 100 meters. That time was good for 1,011 points and a 17-point lead over Hardee.
He followed that by going 26-4.25/8.03m in the long jump to increase the lead to 143 points. That margin shrunk a bit in the shot put following a best throw of 48-1.25/14.66m. Hardee threw 50-1.75/15.28m to cut Eaton's lead to 105 points.
But Eaton moved farther ahead in the final two events of the day. In the high jump, Eaton successfully opened at 6-4/1.93m and then sailed through first attempt clearances at 6-5/1.96m, 6-6.25/1.99m, 6-7.5/2.02m and 6-8.75/2.05m before bowing out at 6-9.75/2.08m. The clearance at 6-8.75 improved his overall lead over Hardee to 161 points.
Eaton then won the 400 meters in 46.90 to wrap up day one.
The Bend, Ore., native will be the lone Duck in competition on Thursday with the final five events of the decathlon on the slate.
Earlier Wednesday, Rupp finished sixth in his 5,000 meter semifinal, but advanced to Friday's final based on time. The 10,000 meter silver medalist ran 13:17.56.
Also, Buckman ran a personal-best 4:05.03 in the semifinals of the women's 1,500 meters but finished 10th and did not advance.
In men's javelin qualifying, Hostetler had a best effort of 248-6/75.76m and did not advance. He was 17th in his flight.
"The competition was better than I thought," said Hostetler. "I was impressed with how people were throwing. I was disappointed in how I threw but happy to be here. It was a great experience. The atmosphere was great - over and beyond what I expected. I just wish I could have matched it."
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