Erin Donohue, a 2008 Olympian, got another chance to race in Eugene and made the most of it.
Donohue, eliminated in the first round of the 800 and not expected to get a lane in the 1,500, was the beneficiary of enough scratches that she was among the 30 women who formed the field for Thursday’s first round.
Donohue, a Haddonfield High School graduate, ran 4:14.37, the sixth-fastest time in Thursday’s three first-round races. She was sixth overall also, since the first race produced the seven fastest times of the competition.
The first seven finishers in that first heat all ran between 4:13.82 and 4:14.40. That’s about half a second separating seven runners.
The first round eliminated just three of the 30 women in the field. There were three scratches, leaving 27 women racing, and 24 advanced to the semifinals — the top six in each of three heats and the next six-fastest times.
Everybody that ran 4:24 or better moved on.
Donohue, a former All-America at North Carolina, has a season-best of 4:11 and a career-best of 4:03.49, set in Rieti, Italy, on Aug. 29, 2010. That’s No. 25 in U.S. history.
The 1,500 semifinals are scheduled for 8:03 p.m. Friday, with the finals at 8 p.m. on Sunday.