Race walk, multi events and relays highlight day 2 at Junior Olympics
Melvin Jackson II
USA Track & Field
INDIANAPOLIS - Race walk, multi-events and the 4x800m relays highlighted the second day of competition at the USATF Junior Olympic Track & Field Championships Wednesday at Carroll Stadium.
Jared Swehosky of Salem, Ore., set a young men's record to win the 5,000m race walk. The 17-year-old Swehosky walked 21:53.80 to better the 21:58.42 set in 2001 by Matt Boyles. "I just wanted to go out hard but my first and second laps were ten seconds too fast, but I still wanted to go for the record," said Swehosky.
Brittani Williams of the 12-Wings track club scored 4,815 points to win the young women's heptathlon by 11 points. Alexandra Coppadge of the Delaware Diamond track club finished second with 4,804 points. "I just needed to come prepared, focused, and ready to take one event at a time and hopefully come out on top," said Coppadge.
It was a close competition in the young men's decathlon as Tim Wunderlich battled back from fourth-place on the first day of competition to successfully defend his title. Wunderlich of Westminster, Md., finished with a 6,806 points followed by runner-up, Duane Hynes of Warrington, Pa., with 6,722 points. "My first day wasn't too good and I was a little disappointed going into the last event that day," said Wunderlich. "On day two, I just tried to PR in every event and I increased my intensity. I won this event last year and was going for a repeat."
Devon Williams and Nicole Jones were the first two World Youth team members to hit the track since competing in Morocco. Williams of Baltimore, Md., anchored the United Stars track club to finish in 8:54.95 winning the intermediate girls' division. "We were relaxed, and very confident coming into the race," said Williams. "Our main goal as a team was to go out hard, have fun, and try to break the record. I just wanted to help my team as much as possible because they all run with so much heart."
Jones of Texas led Track Houston to a third-place finish in 9:23.74 in the intermediate girls' 4x800m relay. "This is my last meet of the season and I have one more chance to do my best and get PRs in all of my events," said Jones. "I want to go for the gold in all of my events because there is no need to hold back." The DC Redwings finished second in 9:03.74.
The Wildcat Youth Sports track club set a youth boys' record in the 4x800m relay with a time of 8:24.03 bettering the 8:28.15 set in 1997 by Track Houston. In the intermediate boys' division, the Ohio Flyers Track Club set a 4x800m relay record with a time of 7:54.10 bettering the 7:56.11 mark set in 2001 by the Whirlaway track club of Massachusetts.
Ashlee Moore of the Arizona Flames scored 1,157 points to win the bantam girls' division of the triathlon (200m, shot put and high jump). Jaz'mine Robertson of the Pasadena Running Roses finished in a close second-place with 1,132 points.
The USATF National Junior Olympic Track & Field Championships is the largest and most visible youth athlete developmental program in the world. The Junior Olympics feature the following age division: Bantam (10 and under), Midget (11-12), Youth (13-14), Intermediate (15-16) and Young Men/Women (17-18).
For more information on the 2005 USATF Junior Olympic Track & Field Championships, including results, athlete quotes, photos and complete coverage of this year's event, please visit the USATF website at www.usatf.org.