Thursday, April 22, 2010

Diana Pickler grabs day 1 heptathlon lead at Drake Relays...

DES MOINES, Iowa--Former Washington State University standout Diana Pickler (left/photo by Paul Merca), the reigning U.S. national champion, grabbed the first-day lead in the Drake Relays heptathlon Wednesday, tallying 3,585 points.

Pickler, a 2008 US Olympian, opened the grueling two-day affair by winning the 100 hurdles in 13.63 seconds and the high jump at 5 feet 10 inches. She was third in the shot put at 39-7.75 and closed out the day by winning the 200 in 24.48.

"I really wasn't going to do heptathlon this early," said Pickler, who was 11th in the 2009 World Championships. "I wasn't thinking about it until probably like two weeks ago. I was hoping for at least a 37 (hundred) first day, but it wasn't quite that. I'm very, very fit right now, but I'm not as sharp, so I just didn't let it go and let it happen like I should have."

The heptathlon competition resumes Thursday with the long jump, javelin, and 800 meter run.

NOTE: Drake University and the Drake Relays contributed to this report.

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