June 23, 2007
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Washington State University's Diana Pickler took second place and Julie Pickler finished sixth in the women's heptathlon at the USA Track & Field Championships at Michael A. Carroll Track & Soccer Stadium in downtown Indianapolis.
Diana Pickler scored 6,029 points, 61 points behind the winner, Hyleas Fountain, the 2005 USA heptathlon champion who scored 6,090 points. Julie Pickler's 5,654 points was sixth-best, and 172 points behind fifth-place Jackie Johnson, the NCAA heptathlon champion from Arizona State. The 2006 heptathlon champion, GiGi Johnson, finished third with 6,002 points.
The top three heptathlon finishers have met the IAAF qualifying "A" standard of 6,000 points and will be selected for the Team USA roster for the IAAF World Outdoor Track & Field Championships, which will take place August 25-September 2, in Osaka, Japan.
The long jump, the opening event of three for the heptathlon second day, saw Diana Pickler leap 19-feet, 9 3/4 inches (6.04m) and Julie Pickler jumped a distance of 19-4 1/4 (5.90m), which were sixth and seventh-best of the event. Both Cougars threw under their PRs in the javelin. Diana Pickler threw the javelin 136-6 (41.61m), third-best overall, and Julie Pickler tossed the spear 125-7 (38.29m), eighth-best.
In the 800m, the Picklers had the eighth and ninth-best times with Diana clocking in at 2 minutes, 19.33 seconds, just off her PR of 2:19.08, and Julie running a time of 2:19.65.
The Picklers are 2007 graduates of Washington State University from Sachse, Texas. Diana Pickler, a four-time All-American, was the 2007 Pac-10 heptathlon champion and was in the lead at the NCAA Championships until being disqualified in the 200m at the end of the first day. Diana Pickler finished fifth in the heptathlon at the 2006 USA Track & Field Championships. Julie Pickler, a five-time All-American, was the runner-up in the heptathlon at the 2007 NCAA Championships.
Other Cougars competing at the USA Track & Field Championships include: Bernard Lagat successfully defended his title in the men's 5000m race Friday with a winning time of 13:30.73. Lagat also qualified for the Sunday 1500m final after running a prelim time of 3:39.40. Saturday, Dominique Arnold ran a prelim time of 13.66 seconds to advance to the final of the men's 110m hurdles. Eric Dudley ran a 400m hurdles first round time of 49.58 seconds which was 11th-best to advance to the semifinals where he ran a time of 49.85, also 11th-best but not fast enough to reach the final. Sunday's action includes Tamara Diles competing in the women's pole vault and Ian Waltz will throw the discus.