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Gilbertson, Kinne, Rocha win multiple titles

National Youth Track

National Youth Track

NORMAL, Ill. – More than fifty national champions were crowned on the first day of competition of the USATF National Youth Indoor Track and Field Championships, with Zoe Gilbertson, Zachary Kinne and Phillip Rocha taking home multiple titles Satruday in Normal, Ill.

Dozens of athletes enjoyed setting meet records in what is the second annual running of the USATF National Youth Indoor Track & Field Championships.

The brother and sister duo of Max Gilbertson and Zoe Gilbertson (Thornton, Colo.) stole the show in the youth age group 55m hurdles. Zoe won the youth girls 55 meter hurdles in a meet record of 9.30 with half a second to spare over second place. Then, her younger brother Max followed suit by winning the youth boys 55m hurdles in 9.12, more than a second and a half over second place. Zoe then went on to win a second title in the youth girls high jump with a clearance of 1.45m/4-09.00 which also set a meet record.

One of the most thrilling races of the afternoon was the midget boys 800m final. Eight young men ran faster than the previous meet record of 2:36.12. Zachary Kinne (Naperville, Ill.) and Peyton Lane (Brooklyn, N.Y.) battled down the straightaway, but Kinne took the win by one tenth of a seond to claim the win in 2:24.45 to Lane’s 2:24.57. Earlier in the day, Kinne also won the 3,00m midget boys title in a meet record time of 10:23.83.

Also taking home multiple titles is Phillip Rocha (Azusa, Calif.) who won both the youth boys 3,000m and 800m. Rocha first set a meet record in the 3,000m of 9:23.53, then he went on to set a meet record in the 800m in 2:05.14. Rocha won by a margin of a nearly a second in both races.

Courtney Morgan (Aurora, Ill.) had an outstanding day in the youth girls shot put where she won in a meet record mark of 12.35m/40-06.25. Morgan improved her seed mark by nearly two feet. It was only on her final attempt of the day that Morgan was able to move into the lead over runner-up Emily Stauffer (Reinholds, Pa.).