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Diana Pickler Makes USA Olympic Team in Heptathlon
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Courtesy: Washington State Athletics
Release: 06/28/2008
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June 28, 2008

EUGENE, Ore. -- Washington State graduate and four-time All-American Diana Pickler finished third in the women's heptathlon Saturday at the USA Olympic Trials and will be a member of the USA Olympic team for the 2008 Games in Beijing. She will be the first American woman from WSU to compete in the Olympic Games in track and field.

Pickler, originally from Sachse, Texas, scored 6,257 points in the seven events, behind winner Hyleas Fountain's 6,667 points and Jacquelyn Johnson's second place total of 6,347 points. Pickler held off a strong effort from fourth-place finisher GiGi Johnson who finished a mere 10 points behind Pickler. Diana's twin sister, Julie Pickler, did not run the 800m, and therefore did not finish with a place in the heptathlon.

In post-event quotes provided on the USATF Olympic Trials website, Diana Pickler said, "I was pretty overwhelmed after javelin because it has not been my forte to race the 800 to beat someone out. I knew I was capable of it. My coach (Washington State Head Track & Field coach Rick Sloan) knew I was capable of it. He was really calm. He was like, `I know you can do it'. It took me a little bit to convince myself but I just stuck on her like glue and knew I could as the race went on. I had to hold, but I just kept my eyes on her back and would not let her get away.

"She put it on at 300 to go. I knew I couldn't let her break away for a second or she would be gone. I just attempted to go with her every time she moved.

"I work on each event in the first three days of the week and then, whatever I need more work on, I will hit them again later in the week. I run three days a week every other day and upper body lift three days a week and lower body two days a week and rest on the weekend if I don't have a meet. That is pretty much my schedule.

"I was extremely overwhelmed right after the javelin. Having to race the 800 to get your place, for any heptathlete, is extremely nerve racking. I haven't been known in the past to race to beat out a person in the 800. I haven't and I have known that I have the capability for a really long time to do it. This is the time to do it. If I didn't do it here, then I don't know where else I would do it. I got really calm right before the race and I think that helped me run relaxed and stay focused."

The day was not as fruitful for WSU freshman Jeshua Anderson who finished ninth in the men's 400m hurdles semifinals Saturday afternoon with a time of 48.92 seconds, which was the eighth-fastest time of the day. The top four finishers in each heat advanced to the final at the USA Olympic Trials.

Anderson, the 2008 Pac-10 and NCAA Champion in the intermediate hurdles, had the fifth-best time in the first heat but only the top four advanced to the final. This was the first race as a collegian that Anderson has not won or run the fastest time. Anderson, from Woodland Hills, Calif., turned 19 years old June 22. WSU alum Eric Dudley finished 10th in the semis with a time of 49.37. Eight competitors advanced to the Sunday final.

Anderson's post-race quotes (from the USA Track & Field Olympic Trials website): "I'm just blessed to get this far."

Anderson will compete at the 2008 International Association of Athletics Federation World Junior Championships in Bydgoszcz, Poland, July 8-13.

Rickey Moody, a 2008 WSU graduate begins competing in the men's decathlon Sunday in Eugene.

For more information, go to the www.usatf.org/events/2008/OlympicTrials-TF/schedule.asp.

Men 400 Meter Hurdles
================================================================
       World: W 46.78  8/6/1992    Kevin Young, USA
    American: A 46.78  8/6/1992    Kevin Young, Foot Locker AC
          OT: T 47.37  7/17/1988   Edwin Moses, Team adidas
     Hayward: S 47.69  1993        Kevin Young, USA
    Name                    Year Team                     Semis
================================================================
Heat  1 Semi-Finals
  1 Kerron Clement               Nike                     48.20Q
  2 Reuben McCoy                 Auburn                   48.37Q
  3 Angelo Taylor                Nike                     48.59Q
  4 Brandon Johnson              Nike                     48.68Q
  5 Jeshua Anderson              unattached               48.92
  6 Eric Dudley                  unattached               49.37
  7 Nathaniel Garcia             U.S. Army                49.52
  8 Brian Derby                  Phenetix Intl            59.07
Heat  2 Semi-Finals
  1 Bershawn Jackson             Nike                     48.63Q
  2 Johnny Dutch                 South Carolina           48.71Q
  3 Justin Gaymon                Georgia                  48.77Q
  4 LaRon Bennett                unattached               49.25Q
  5 Robert Griffin               Baylor                   49.38
  6 James Carter                 Nike                     49.45
  7 Terry Thornton               unattached               49.90
  8 Joey Woody                   unattached               50.34
================================================================
       World: W 46.78  8/6/1992    Kevin Young, USA
    American: A 46.78  8/6/1992    Kevin Young, Foot Locker AC
          OT: T 47.37  7/17/1988   Edwin Moses, Team adidas
     Hayward: S 47.69  1993        Kevin Young, USA
    Name                    Year Team                     Semis
================================================================
Semi-Finals
  1 Kerron Clement               Nike                     48.20Q
  2 Bershawn Jackson             Nike                     48.63Q
  3 Reuben McCoy                 Auburn                   48.37Q
  4 Johnny Dutch                 South Carolina           48.71Q
  5 Angelo Taylor                Nike                     48.59Q
  6 Justin Gaymon                Georgia                  48.77Q
  7 Brandon Johnson              Nike                     48.68Q
  8 LaRon Bennett                unattached               49.25Q
  9 Jeshua Anderson              unattached               48.92
 10 Eric Dudley                  unattached               49.37
 11 Robert Griffin               Baylor                   49.38
 12 James Carter                 Nike                     49.45
 13 Nathaniel Garcia             U.S. Army                49.52
 14 Terry Thornton               unattached               49.90
 15 Joey Woody                   unattached               50.34
 16 Brian Derby                  Phenetix Intl            59.07
Washington State Cougars Athletics
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