Pinnick wins two golds, sets national record


August 8, 2007

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - Shakeia Pinnick won four medals, including two gold, and set a national record to pace the Aurora Flyers track team's total of 34 medals and six national titles at the AAU Junior Olympics.

Pinnick won the heptathlon with a score of 4,813 points and captured the 400 hurdles title in a record-setting time of 59.48 seconds.

The hurdles was the big one, because I got the record and it was 23 years old, said the Waubonsie Valley High School junior-to-be. I was thinking I could beat it because I've run a 59.11 earlier this year. I wanted to break it in the preliminaries but I was stuttering (steps between the hurdles) too much.

About an hour and a half before the 400 hurdles finals, Pinnick took second in the 800-meter run (2:12.34) and she also placed fifth in the 100 hurdles with a personal record of 14.51 seconds.

I don't think I p.r.'ed in any event in the heptathlon but I just did better in them than I have been earlier this summer, she said.

Pinnick, who competed in the intermediate (ages 15-16) division, takes a short break before starting high school cross country workouts.

It's kind of just running to stay in shape, she said. I've got to get my mileage in. I know I've got to do it to get better.

The AAU meet also included competition in young men and women (17-18), youth (13-14), midget (12), sub-midget 11, bantam (10), sub-bantam (9) and primary (8-under) divisions.

The Flyers are coached by Tom Boatright. Their other champions included Courtney Morgan, who set a national record in taking the primary girls shot put. Her throw of 27 feet, 5 inches topped the previous record of 24-8 by almost three feet.

The Flyers also got wins from McKinzie Schulz of Naperville in intermediate girls steeplechase (7:17.90); Noah Kauppila of Aurora won sub-midget boys 3000 meters (10:20.85); and Charles Pool of Aurora won the youth boys high jump (6-0).

Other Flyer medalists included:

Erek Drew, 3rd in youth boys triple jump; Annette Eichenberger, Jessica Pacholski, Victoria McCadd and Myra Yelle, 5th in 3200 relay; Eichenberger, 6th in steeplechase; Katharine Yelle, Paige Crowford, Chantay Washington and Jahnell Horton, 3rd in youth girls 3200 relay; Yelle 3rd in youth girls 800; Noah Kauppila, Michael McCallister, Alex Edwards, Ryan Marcano, 6th in midget boys 3200 relay; Schulz, 3rd in intermediate girls 1500 and 6th in 800; Kelsey Ontko, 5th in young women's long jump; Pool 4th in youth boys long jump; Talise Romain, 3rd in sub-midget girls 800, 6th in 400; Dan Newhouse, 5th in young men's javelin; Jasmine Walker, 4th in youth girls shot put; Miles Simelton, 4th in midget boys high jump.

The same week, Monika Jakutyte (Neuqua Valley High School) placed 4th in young women's high jump at the USATF National Jr. Olympic Championships at Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut, Calif.