LONDON - Former Tar Heel Ola Sesay of Sierra Leone did not leap out of qualifying for the women's long jump as Vikas Gowda of India finished eighth in the men's discus final at the 2012 Olympics.
Sesay was appearing in her first Olympics and was Sierra Leone's first female athlete ever to compete in track and field in an Olympiad. She placed 12th in her group and 23rd overall with a best jump of 6.22 meters (20-4). Sesay also reached 5.77 meters (18-11) and 5.91 meters (19-4) in her other two jumps.
Sesay graduated from Carolina and the track and field program in 2001. She specialized in the long jump, hurdles and sprints as a Tar Heel. She was the 2000 ACC Champion in the long jump for both indoor and outdoor seasons and was also the outdoor long jump title-winner in 2001. She qualified for the NCAA national championship in the long jump in 2000 and 2001 as well.
Gowda, who was India's favorite to medal in track and field, threw a best-of-six 64.79 meters (212-6 ¾) in the discus final. His other throws reached 60.95 meters (199-11 ⅔), 63.03 (206-9 ½), 64.15 (210-5 ½), 64.48 (211-6 ½), and 63.89 (209-7 ⅓). The gold medal was awarded to Germany's Robert Harting who threw 68.27 meters (225-5 ½), silver to Ehsan Hadadi at 68.18 (223-8 ¼), and bronze to Gerd Kanter at 68.03 (223-2 ⅓).
Next up for the Tar Heels at the Olympics is Alice Schmidt who will run in the 800-meter qualifying round on Wednesday at 6:35 a.m. EDT. Live streaming video will be available here.