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Jones overshadows boyfriend

Associated Press

KINGSTON, Jamaica — Marion Jones got into the starting blocks and the crowd stood on its feet.

Cameras flashed, but a hush came over the stadium. After all, it was the crowd’s first chance to see the five-time Olympic medalist running in Jamaica.

She certainly didn’t disappoint. Jones won the 100 meters Friday night at the Jamaica International Invitational, easily winning in 11.04 seconds. Aleen Bailey of Jamaica was a distant second in 11.19.

Jones’ boyfriend, fellow sprinter Tim Montgomery, fared worse in his 100. American Darvis Patton won in a photo finish over countryman John Capel after lunging his head forward at the finish line. Patton took the race in 10.12, 0.01 ahead of Capel.

Montgomery was fourth in 10.25 and didn’t talk to reporters.

Though it wasn’t the fastest time for Jones, this was her first competition outdoors in the 100 since 2002.

Jones had more to go. She was set to compete in the long jump outdoors for the first time since winning bronze at the Sydney Olympics 2000, about an hour after her sprint race.

The crowd cheered wildly when Jones won, giving her more of an ovation than the Jamaican sprinters. Though the stadium was half-full, the crowd made enough noise to get Jones’ attention.

“I felt really good,” Jones said while she waved to the crowd. “Thanks you guys for turning out.”

Though steroid allegations have dogged her, Jones still is track and field’s darling. As she walked off the track after her race, the crowd kept clapping and waving.

Jones and Montgomery were among dozens of athletes — including baseball sluggers Barry Bonds and Jason Giambi — who testified before the grand jury that indicted BALCO founder Victor Conte. No athletes were indicted.

Before Jamaica, Jones had competed in several meets with mixed results. She finished a disappointing fourth in the 200 at the Mt. SAC Relays last month in her first outdoor meet since 2002 because, “I was so hyped to be back in California, to be running one of my favorite events.”

But she rebounded with a strong performance at the Penn Relays a week later, anchoring the 800- and 400-meter relay teams to victories.

As for Montgomery, his results so far this season have been a little disappointing.

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