Kilmartin, Julie Pickler Lead USA Junior Combined Event Championships
June 18, 2002
Donovan Kilmartin of Team Idaho and Julie Pickler of Texas Express lead the USA Junior Combined Event National Championships after the first day of competition at Edwards Stadium.
Kilmartin won three of five events Tuesday to finish the day with 3,949 points, which is 108 points ahead of the national high school decathlon record (7537) set by Craig Brigham of South Eugene High School in 1972. The implements used 30 years ago were heavier than today. Kilmartin won the decathlon at last year's Junior Olympics with a national youth record score of 7,405 points. The 18-year-old from Meridian, Idaho is 274 points ahead of USC's Robert Bates (3675). Justin Palmer, who just entered the meet this morning, is third with 3,588 points.
Kilmartin, who led day one from start to finish, took top honors in the 100m (11.17w, 823 points), long jump (23-8, 864) and high jump (6-9.75, 878).
'I'm shooting for 7550,' said Kilmartin. 'All my marks I hit today. So, I'm actually a little ahead of pace. Right now, I'm standing pretty good as far as my pace. I'm having a good day so far.'
The junior heptathlon race is a lot closer as a different athlete won each of the four events today. In the end, Julie Pickler was the first-day leader with a day one PR of 3,261 points. She is 12 points ahead of her twin-sister Diana (3249), also of Texas Express, and 44 points ahead of Vanderbilt's Josie Hahn (3218). Both are 18 and hail from Sasche, Texas.
Julie was able to climb from third after three events to first by winning the 200m (25.07w, 880). Her best event was the 100mH, which earned her 953 points for her time of 14.18. She placed third in the heptathlon at the 2001 U.S. national meet with 5147 points and has never beaten her sister in a heptathlon.
'I'm happy I'm ahead of my PR,' said Julie Pickler. 'I'm where I want to be. (Diana) is usually ahead of me on the first day, but we're usually within 20 points of each other.'
Diana, the defending U.S. heptathlon champion with 5,261 points, started the day with a victory in the 100mH (13.88, 995). Hahn and South Carolina's Chelsea Hammon took top honors in the high jump with a clearance of 5-9.25 (928), and Amber Metoyer of Boulder Track Club claimed the shot put with a mark of 44-4.25 (762).
'Our objective is to finish first and second,' said John Turek, who coaches both Pickler sisters. 'Our second objective is to hit the World Junior qualifying standard which is 5275. Scoring is almost more important because you could finish first or second but if you don't hit the qualifying mark, it's for naught. Diana has already qualified based on her performance at the Junior Olympics last year when she scored 5365.'
Competition continues Wednesday with the second day of the junior decathlon and heptathlon and the first day of the senior decathlon and heptathlon. Events run from 9:30 a.m. -6:30 p.m. at Edwards Stadium.
1. Donovan Kilmartin (Team Idaho) 3949, 2. Robert Bates (USC) 3675, 3. Justin Palmer (Unattached) 3588, 4. Greg Royster (South Carolina) 3482, 5. Justin Smith (Unattached) 3441, 6. Benjamin Looney (Pre Track Club) 3411, 7. Jordan Mumford (Texas Express) 3388, 8. Chris Helwick (Greenley Central HS) 3277, 9. Brian Bernard (Azuza Pacific) 3201, 10. Eli Bergevin (McKay HS) 3086, 11. Dan Strong (Oklahoma) 3065, 12. Chad Andrews (Texas Express) 2818, 13. Kalen Schiedt (Lassiter TC) 2454.
1. Julie Pickler (Texas Express) 3261, 2. Diana Pickler (Texas Express) 3249, 3. Jose Hahn (Vanderbilt) 3218, 4. Amber Williams (Miami) 3134, 5. Danielle McNan (Liberty) 3087, 6. Amber Metoyer (Boulder Track Club) 2965, 7. Shani Boston (Northside Red Runners) 2823, 8. Ashleigh Keats (Unattached) 2750, 9. Ahimsa Hodari (Stanford) 2750, 10. Sarah Gretzmac (Jefferson County Jets) 2720, 11. Jacenta Spandl (Moorhead HS) 2704, 12. Dani Maier (Westside Track Club) 2601, 13. Morgan Altizer (Thousand Oaks HS) 2563, 14. Katie Lloyd (Fruita Monument HS) 2471, 15. Chelsea Hammon (South Carolina) 2277.