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Jones won't defend title in 200 meters

Posted: Sunday, July 18, 2004

SACRAMENTO, Calif. A couple of sprinters who may be barred from the Athens Games because of positive drug tests sped into the men's and women's finals in the 200 meters Saturday at the U.S. Olympic track and field trials.

Torri Edwards, who faces a two-year ban if found guilty of using a banned stimulant, had the fastest time of 22.38 seconds in the semifinals of the women's 200. She already has qualified for the Athens Games by placing second in the 100.

Mickey Grimes, who faces a lifetime ban if found guilty of a second drug violation, moved into the men's 200 final by placing third in his semifinal.

If she gets to Athens, Edwards won't be facing defending Olympic champion Marion Jones in the 200. Citing fatigue, Jones withdrew from the event Saturday.

Jones failed to qualify in the 100, either, which means that as of now she won't be defending either of her Olympic sprint titles at the Summer Games. She won the long jump at the Olympic trials, which also makes her eligible for the relays in Athens.

But a change in the 100 squad is possible because of Edwards' drug case. If she loses her arbitration hearing set for Monday, Edwards could lose her place on the team.

That would move the fourth-place finisher at the trials, Gail Devers, onto the team. But Devers, who already has won two Olympic 100 titles, has always wanted to win a hurdles title and could skip the 100 to focus on the hurdles. In that case, the fifth-place finisher Jones would make the team.

U.S. Olympic women's track coach Sue Humphrey said Devers will wait until after Sunday's hurdles final to decide whether to remain the alternate for the 100.

''If it happens that a lane opens up for whatever reason in Athens, you can be sure I will take advantage of it,'' Jones said. ''I will prepare for the next few weeks just in case that happens so I'm not surprised by the time I get to Athens.''

Among those joining Edwards in the women's 200 final Sunday will be 18-year-old Allyson Felix and 20-year-old LaShaunte'a Moore who said she was surprised at Jones' absence.

''I looked around (in the warmup area) and didn't see her,'' Moore said. ''I was kind of shocked not to see her out there.''

Grimes had a positive result for a steroid in an out-of-competition test this year. Grimes also was stripped of a gold medal in the 100 at last year's Pan American Games after testing positive for the stimulant ephedrine.

Grimes is an HSInternational track club teammate of Edwards. A third HSI athlete, hurdler Larry Wade, was named in a drug case this week. A source speaking on condition of anonymity said Wade tested positive for a steroid in an out-of-competition sampling.

The fastest time in the men's 200 semifinals was 20.00 by Shawn Crawford. Grimes had the sixth-fastest time.

Bryan Clay won the decathlon with 8,660 points, and world champion Tom Pappas was second with 8,517. Paul Terek won the third spot on the U.S. squad for Athens.

In the women's 100 hurdles, three-time world champion Devers moved a step closer to making her fifth Olympic team.

Devers, who has never won an Olympic medal in the hurdles despite being the world's best in that event for most of the past decade, was second overall in the quarterfinals with a time of 12.79. Joanna Hayes was fastest in 12.67.

Former Olympic champion Allen Johnson had the fastest time of 13.25 in the quarterfinals of the men's 110 hurdles.

Monique Hennagan won the women's 400, Melvin Lister captured the U.S. title in the men's triple jump and Breaux Greer won the men's javelin. Tim Seaman won the men's 20-kilometer race walk despite throwing up early in the race.



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