Out, then in: US gets a reprieve after mixed relay DQ

Jul 29, 2021, 6:06 PM | Updated: Jul 30, 2021, 9:55 am

TOKYO (AP) — The U.S. men have a long history of dicey baton exchanges in the Olympic relays. So do the U.S. women.

Their latest was a first-of-its-kind chance to flub one together, which they might have, but they caught a break that gives them a chance to still win a medal.

The country’s difficult history in relay races reappeared in the Olympic debut of the 4×400-meter mixed relay when the team was disqualified for a bad exchange, only to be reinstated after filing a middle-of-the-night protest that got resolved early Saturday in Japan.

Officials originally ruled that Lynna Irby had positioned herself outside the passing zone when she received the exchange from Elija Godwin in Friday night’s preliminary heat.

Later, they overturned that decision on appeal. USA Track and Field announced the change but did not provide details of what happened. The Dominican Republic also had been disqualified but was later reinstated.

In the 4×400, officials direct the next group of runners onto the track to try to maintain a semblance of order in the sometimes-crowded exchange zone. Runners can be every bit as attuned to where the officials tell them to line up as to the teammate about to give them the baton.

“Mistakes happen,” Godwin said before the appeal. “We are human. We do make mistakes.”

Because the decision was overturned, Allyson Felix could get a chance to win her record 10th Olympic medal Saturday night. She helped the U.S. win this race in its debut at the world championships two years ago.

If she is placed in the lineup for the final, she can break a tie with Jamaican great Merlene Ottey for the most women’s track medals in Olympic history. Felix will also run next week in the women’s 400 and could have a spot in the women’s 4×400 next weekend.

This was the latest chapter in long string of drama for the U.S. in relays. Much of it has come in the shorter 4×100 relay where the pass is a more technical and time-sensitive move.

A “DQ” at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games marked the ninth time since 1995 the men had botched the relay at a world championships or Olympics.

The women misconnected at the 2004 and 2008 Games and got shut out of the medals.

This latest episode is more reminiscent of 2016.

Felix was on the U.S. women’s team that was initially disqualified from the preliminaries for an illegal pass in the 4×100. But they protested because Felix got jostled by another runner. Hours later, they came back to the track to run a time trial with no other team on the track. That advanced them to the final, where they won easily.

___

More AP Olympics: https://apnews.com/2020-tokyo-olympics and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Arizona's Azuolas Tubelis (10) pressures California's Marsalis Robertson (0) during the first half ...
Associated Press

No. 4 Arizona rebounds from first loss, beats winless Cal

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — Azuolas Tubelis and Oumar Ballo combined for 42 points and 19 rebounds, and No. 4 Arizona bounced back from its first loss by holding off winless California 81-68 on Sunday. Tubelis had 25 points and 12 rebounds, while Ballo — the Division I leader in field goal percentage — made 7 […]
16 hours ago
UCLA guard Jaylen Clark (0) and Oregon guard Will Richardson battle for a rebound during the first ...
Associated Press

No. 21 UCLA rallies late, hangs on to beat Oregon 65-56

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Jaylen Clark and freshman Amari Bailey scored 14 points each and No. 21 UCLA rallied in the final four minutes to hold off Oregon 65-56 on Sunday for its fourth straight win. The Bruins (7-2, 2-0 Pac-12) hadn’t had a big scoring run all game until they pulled away late. Clinging […]
16 hours ago
Associated Press

Johnson scores 31 as Bellarmine routs Alice Lloyd 110-38

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Ben Johnson’s 31 points led Bellarmine over Alice Lloyd 110-38 on Sunday night. Johnson also contributed seven rebounds, five assists, and three steals for the Knights (3-6). Sam Devault was 5 of 10 shooting (3 for 6 from distance) to add 15 points. Landin Hacker shot 4 for 5 from beyond […]
16 hours ago
Associated Press

Olivari scores 30, Rice beats Texas State 83-71

SAN MARCOS, Texas (AP) — Quincy Olivari recorded 30 points as Rice beat Texas State 83-71 on Sunday night. Olivari also had five rebounds for the Owls (6-2). Cameron Sheffield scored 13 points and grabbed six rebounds. Mekhi Mason added 13 points. Mason Harrell led the Bobcats (5-4) in scoring, finishing with 23 points. Drue […]
16 hours ago
Associated Press

No. 11 LSU women beat back Tulane in 85-72 win

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Angel Reese scored 21 points and had 10 rebounds and Jasmine Carson scored 21 and No. 11 LSU beat Tulane 85-72 on Sunday night. The Tigers (9-0) are off to their best since winning their first nine in the 2009-10 season. LSU led 27-20 in a first quarter in which it […]
16 hours ago
Winnipeg Jets' Mark Scheifele (55) celebrates his goal against the Anaheim Ducks with teammates dur...
Associated Press

Barron, Scheifele score in 3rd period, Jets beat Ducks

WINNIPEG, Manitoba (AP) — Morgan Barron and Mark Scheifele scored a pair of quick goals in the third period and the Winnipeg Jets beat the Anaheim Ducks 5-2 on Sunday. Barron scored at 13:23 for a 3-2 lead. Scheifele followed up with his team-leading 13th goal of the season at 15:12. Saku Maenalanen and Nate […]
16 hours ago
Out, then in: US gets a reprieve after mixed relay DQ