Former Cal runner Alysia Montano ended her Olympic journey with an upsetting fifth place finish in the women’s 800 final on Saturday.
After winning the U.S. Track & Field Olympic Trials in the event earlier this year, Montano was the American most favored to win a medal, but she came up short. Montano, running in lane four with her signature flower in her hair, finished with a time of 1:57.93, exactly 0.4 seconds behind Russian bronze medal winner Ekaterina Poistogova, who finished with a time of 1:57.53.
It was a disappointing finish for the three-time U.S. Track & Field Outdoor Champion, who had her Olympic dreams ripped away in 2008 when an injury prevented her from making the Olympic team. Montano led the race for the first 500 meters but then dropped back into the pack. Had she matched or beaten her top 2012 time — 1:57.37 — she would have been the one standing up on the podium receiving the bronze medal. Instead, Montano leaves the Olympics empty-handed, unable to pull out a medal in her only race of the Games.