Morgan Uceny's 1500m run ended the same way her run at the 2011 World Championships ended: with her on the ground, no chance of winning, due to no fault of her own.
The race was tight. That's not a big problem in races of less than a track length, where runners each get their own lanes. But in distance races, where all the runners find themselves bunched together along the furthest inside lane jockeying for position, accidents can happen: runners legs can clip each other, and when that happens, runners fall. Russian runner Ekaterina Kostetskaya caught Uceny's knee with one of her strides with less than a lap to go, Uceny tumbled to the ground, and just like that, her Olympics were over. If this had been a qualifying round, she could have appealed, as Oscar Pistorius' 4x400 team did to earn a spot in the final of that relay, but no such luck in the finals.
Her anguish after losing will be able to fill the "agony of defeat" portion of slideshows for years to come. Uceny wasn't a favorite to win gold, but she had a shot at medaling. Luckily, she wasn't injured, but she leaves London without having had a real chance at winning.
Uceny would've been the first American woman to medal in the distance: in her place, two non-traditional track champions took her spot, as Turkey's Asli Cakir Alptekin and Gamze Bulut took gold and silver, while Bahrain's Maryam Yusuf Jamal won bronze. American Shannon Rowbury took sixth, while the runner whose leg caught Uceny's knee, Kostetskaya, was about three seconds off the lead in ninth place.