Wiltrout, Wilkinson, Hoey Take Thirds at USATF Junior Outdoors Championships


Photos by Kathy Leister (left) and Howard Anderson (right)

Pennsylvanians fared very well on Saturday at the USATF Junior National Outdoor Championships in Sacramento, California. Three PA high schoolers left with third place podium finishes and a few ran state leading times.

In the 800 meters, both Friends' Central's Gabrielle Wilkinson and Bishop Shanahan's Josh Hoey placed third in the finals and ran PA#1s and personal bests.

Wilkinson took third in her race, running 2:06.03 to set a new state-leading time and better her own PR of 2:06.87, which came indoors last year. The rising senior put herself in the mix, going out in 61 seconds and finished strong in a race won by Florida high schooler Caitlin Collier, who clocked a 2:03.63.

Hoey went under 1:50 in the 800 meters for the first time in his career. Last month, the rising senior won the PIAA Class AAA state title in the event, but he ran faster on Saturday, clocking in at 1:49.37, which is also a US#4. Cameron Cooper, a Michigan high schooler, won in 1:47.59.

In the junior women's javelin, Connellsville's Madison Wiltrout closed out her terrific high school career with a third place finish. Wiltrout threw 157-2, the top high schooler in the six girl field. Wiltrout is the national record holder and four-time PIAA Class AAA state champ in the javelin. The University of Nebraska's Sydney Otto won the competition with a toss of 160-6.

Hickory's Evan Blaire, who took 13th in the junior men's shot put on Friday, returned on Saturday for the junior men's discus. Blaire, a senior bound for Auburn University in the fall, threw a best of 169-2 to finish in 11th place in the competition.

Erika Voyzey of the University of Miami (Fl.), who graduated from Tyrone Area last year, cleared 5-7 to finish sixth in the junior women's high jump.

The meet finishes up tomorrow, with Knoch's Jordan Geist competing in the senior men's shot put against some professionals and collegians.


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