It wasn't exactly what the two runners expected nearly 10 minutes into their heat of the women's 5,000 meters at Olympic Stadium on Tuesday.
In the middle of the pack, Abbey D'Agostino of Topsfield, Mass., and Nikki Hamblin of New Zealand got tangled up in the second heat when D'Agostino clipped Hamblin from behind. Hamblin tumbled down and D'Agostino went with her as collateral damage.
But without hesitation, D'Agostino, the former Dartmouth standout, got up to help Hamblin, who was sprawled on the ground.
"When I went down, I was like, 'What's happening? Why am I on the ground?' " Hamblin said. "And suddenly there's this hand on my shoulder like, 'Get up, get up, we have to finish this."
Then after D'Agostino realized she had hurt her ankle in the fall, Hamblin tried to help her continue.
She eventually had to leave her behind but waitied at the line for D'Agostino to finish.
Hamblin finished 29th in 16 minutes, 43.61 seconds; D'Agostino finished 30th in 17:10:02.
"And I'm like, 'OK, yep, yep, you're right, it's the Olympic Games, we have to finish this,' " Hamblin said.
"I'm so grateful for Abbey for doing that for me. I mean, that girl is the Olympic spirit right there.
"I've never met this girl before and isn't that just so amazing? . . . Regardless of the race and the result on the board, that's a moment that you're never, ever going to forget."
The pair embraced at the finish, before D'Agostino was taken from the track in a wheelchair. Since the fall was neither runner's fault, both advanced to the finals, which will be Friday.
"Everyone wants to win and get a medal, but as disappointing as it is, there is so much more to this," Hamblin said.
"For sure [we have] a friendship now. When someone asks me what happened in Rio in 20 years time, that is my story. She is my story."
The Olympic volunteers are dropping like flies and, like flies, they are heading for the snack table.
The New York Daily News reported that only around 35,000 of the 50,000 original volunteers have continued to show up.
Olympic organizers said they accounted for attrition in the recruiting numbers, so the dropoff isn't a problem.
Luis Moreira told Canada's CBC on Tuesday he quit his job as a volunteer because he felt he was taken advantage of by the organizing committee.
''Many volunteers had to quit because they had to work two weeks in a row, schedules were messed up, lots of people quit because of the food: they were told to work eight, nine hours and were only provided with a little snack,'' Moreira said.
''It was as though the organizing committee was doing us a favor. The committee uses the volunteers to make money, uses us for free labor.''
Using volunteers for free labor doesn't quite seem like a fireable offense, but a sandwich really shouldn't be too much to ask.
No sound, no problem
The public address system broke down at the Olympic Hockey Centre Tuesday, but Belgium and the Netherlands weren't about to let that stop them from belting out their national anthems.
The singing Dutchmen, then the Belgians, led their fans in the songs before their semifinal match, generating plenty of cheers from the stands.
It was a nice moment of patriotism and, best of all, the match started right on time. Everybody loves a brisk anthem.
A marriage and a medal
Moments after he earned a silver medal in the triple jump, US Olympian Will Claye rushed over to his backpack, pulled out a little box, and proposed to his longtime girlfriend, hurdler Queen Harrison.
She said yes.
''When I woke up this morning I was like, 'Today is going to be the best day of my life,' '' Claye said. ''I'm going to go out there and do what I have to do on the track first and I am going to make her my fiancee after that.''
Claye jumped 17.76 meters, second only to his good friend and teammate Christian Taylor.
So, what did you do today?
Material from the Associated Press was used in this report.