May 7, 2005
LOS ANGELES, Calif.-- Washington State's Diana Pickler leads the heptathlon and Darion Powell leads the decathlon after the first day's events of the Pacific-10 Conference Combined Events Championships at Drake Stadium on the UCLA campus.
Diana Pickler, a redshirt sophomore from Sachse, Texas, leads the 11-women field after the first four events of the heptathlon with a first-day lifetime-best total of 3,393 points. Her twin sister Julie is in third place with a PR of 3,278 points, and only 46 points behind the second-place competitor, Lauryn Jordan from Oregon. Katie Miller, junior from Vancouver, Wash., is in 7th place with a PR of 3,005 points.
Powell, a junior from Kirkland, Wash., leads the nine-man decathlon field after five events with 3,889 points, a 161-point advantage over second-place Robert Arnold of Arizona. Brandon Brownell, a sophomore from Olympia, Wash., is ninth with 2,811 points, but has withdrawn from the competition.
Diana Pickler started the day by running the fastest time of the 100m hurdles with a time of 13.79 seconds which is also an NCAA Regional Qualifying mark. Julie Pickler's 14.11 was second-fastest while Miller's time of 14.61 was sixth overall.
In the high jump, Diana Pickler had the top height in the event after she cleared a lifetime-best height of 5-8 3/4 (1.75m), also an NCAA RQ mark. Miller cleared a season-best height of 5-5 1/4 (1.66m) and Julie Pickler cleared the bar at 5-4 1/4 (1.63m).
"It ended up a good day although no one looked particularly sharp, oddly enough," Cougar Head Coach Rick Sloan said. "They looked rough, somewhat out of sync. Nothing came easy today. We had to work on things and managed each event. But all three finished up nicely with best-ever first days."
Powell and Brownell opened the decathlon with the top two times in the 100m dash of 11.13 and 11.17 seconds, and had the top two long jumps with Powell's distance 23-0 1/2 (7.02m) and Brownell leaped 22-2 3/4 (6.80m).
Powell had the longest throw in the shot put at 47-3 1/2 (14.41m) while Brownell heaved 41-5 (12.62m), sixth-best overall.
In the high jump, Powell cleared 6-2 1/4 (1.89m) which tied for fifth highest. Brownell cleared 5-8 1/2 (1.74m) but strained his hamstring, had to pass at the next height and could not continue in the competition. Powell finished the day with a 400m dash time of 50.73. His first-day total of 3,889 points is 79 points behind his PR.
"Darion was solid all-day long," Sloan said. "He says his legs feel great. We're being somewhat conservative to establish early marks on the events but he's had a steady performance. Our objective is to win the Pac-10 competition and score high enough to go to the NCAA. Brandon's strained hamstring is not too bad but bad enough to not be able to continue in the competition. If he had been able to continue on, I think he could have finished at least seventh, or maybe sixth with a decent second day."
The last three heptathlon and five decathlon events take place Sunday at Drake Stadium. The Pac-10 Championships continue next weekend with the rest of the individual and team competition.
MOSCOW, Idaho -- Several Cougars reached PRs at the Vandal Jamboree Track & Field meet at Moscow Saturday.
La Shawnda Porter won the women's 100m dash with a PR time of 12.01. Brandi Probasco-Canda won the women's 200m dash with a season-best time of 24.82 while Kameko Wilson finished third with a lifetime-best time of 25.60.
McKinnon Hanson equaled her PR in the high jump with a leap of 5-7 (1.70m) for second place.
In the women's shot put and the discus, McKenzie Burgess was second to one of her coaches, volunteer assistant Andrea Thornton. Thornton threw the shot 45-4 1/4 while Burgess heaved the shot 44-6 (13.56). Thornton's discus mark was 169-1 and Burgess threw the disc 152-2 (46.39m).