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London Olympics: Leo Manzano rallies for silver in men's 1,500

August 07, 2012|By Helene Elliott
  • Leo Manzalo reacts after claiming silver in the men's 1,500 meter on Tuesday night in London.
Leo Manzalo reacts after claiming silver in the men's 1,500 meter… (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles…)

LONDON — The U.S. is becoming a middle-distance and distance force at the Olympic track and field competition.

Leo Manzano of Marble Falls, Texas, surged from sixth at the top of the stretch to finish second in the men’s 1,500 meters Tuesday night, the first American man to win a medal in that event since Jim Ryun in 1968.

Earlier, Americans Nick Symmonds of Eugene, Ore., and Duane Solomon of Rosemead had advanced to the finals of the men’s 800, marking the first time the U.S. has had two men in that final since 1992. The last time the U.S. had one representative in the 800 final was 1996.

Taoufik Makhloufi of Algeria easily won the 1,500 in a time of 3 minutes, 34.08 seconds. Manzano’s time was 3:34.79. Abdalaati Iguider of Morocco was third in 3:35, and Matt Centrowitz of Arnold, Md., was fourth in 3:35.17.

Symmonds and Solomon both reached the 800 final as the fastest runners who didn’t finish in the top two of their respective heats.

The U.S. already has a silver medal in the 10,000 from Galen Rupp, only the third time an American man finished in the top three in the Olympics at that distance. But Americans have been shut out in the sprints, with Jamaicans Usain Bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce winning the men’s and women’s 100-meter dashes, respectively.

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