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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Toussaint nails final triple jump

Staff and wire reports

A second Spokane track athlete has earned a trip to the Pan American Junior Championships next month.

West Valley’s Rashad Toussaint, just denied a 50-foot triple jump at the state championships last month, conquered a bigger barrier Sunday by bounding 52 feet, one-half inch to finish second at the U.S. Junior Track and Field Championships at Carson, Calif.

And once again, Toussaint’s competitive instincts took over.

Kenny Hall of the Futures Track Club won the competition with a leap of 53-9 1/4 , aided by a 2.2 meters-per-second wind.

Nkosinza Balumbu of the Mission Valley Track Club of California was in second place through the second round with a wind-aided 51-7 jump, but Toussaint – after fouling twice, came up with his big effort in the sixth and final round to earn the Pan-Am trip. The top two finishers qualified for that meet July 28-31 in Windsor, Ontario.

Toussaint’s best jump, too, was wind-aided, but he had four measured jumps beyond the 50-foot mark.

In the U.S. senior championships being held concurrently, Danielle Ayers-Stamper of LaCrosse, Wash., finished eighth and earned a spot on the U.S. national team in the women’s heptathlon with a personal-best mark of 5,646 points, while University of Idaho shot putter Russ Winger improved more than two feet on his lifetime best to take ninth with a toss of 65-9 1/2 .

Also, Justin Gatlin cemented his status as America’s fastest human by winning the 200 meters, becoming the first man in 20 years to sweep the sprints at the U.S. track and field championships.

A day after winning the 100, Gatlin turned it on down the stretch to win the 200 in 20.04 seconds. The last man to win both races at the U.S. meet was Kirk Baptiste in 1985. Tyson Gay, just out of Arkansas, was second in 20.06, followed by the Olympic gold medalist in the event, Shawn Crawford, in 20.12.

Wallace Spearmon, who has the world’s fastest time in the event this year in 19.91, finished fourth at 20.16 and failed to make the U.S. team for the world championships in Helsinki, Finland, Aug. 6-14. The men’s 200, into a head wind, was the last event of the four-day competition at Home Depot Center.

Kerron Clement won the 400 hurdles and Allyson Felix took the women’s 200, as both 19-year-olds posted two of the most impressive championship performances from a young corps of talent that is taking over the sport in the United States.

Clement ran the fastest 400 hurdles in seven years, running away from the more experienced field in 47.24. Bershawn Jackson, no old-timer himself at 22, was second in 47.80.

Felix, just 18 when she won the silver medal in Athens, caught the pack and shot into the lead with 20 meters to go in 22.13, fastest in the world this year. She also has the second-fastest time. Rachelle Smith was a surprising second at 22.34. LaTasha Colander edged 100 champion Lisa Barber at the tape for third at 22.34. Barber was timed at 22.37.

Christian Cantwell had the best throw in the world last year, but fell apart at the Olympic trials and failed to make the team in Athens. This time, though, he won the shot put with a throw of 71 feet.

Two-time Olympic silver medalist Adam Nelson was second at 70-7 1/4 . Three-time world champion John Godina was third at 68-10 1/2 .

Michelle Perry, an Olympian in the heptathlon last year, beat Olympic gold medalist Joanna Hayes in the 100 hurdles. Running into a head wind, Perry won in 12.66. Hayes was second in 12.77.

The top three finishers in each event make the U.S. team for the world championships, providing they meet qualifying standards.

Hazel Clark, the youngest of the running Clark family, won the 800 in 1:59.74 for her first outdoor championship. She won the U.S. indoor earlier this season.

Olympic silver medalist Matt Hemmingway won the high jump. He was one of four who cleared 7-5 1/4 , but took first on fewer misses.

Jesse Williams was second and Keith Moffatt third. Kyle Lancaster was fourth and failed to make the U.S. team, even though he cleared the same height as the winner.

Khadevis Robinson won the men’s 800 in 1:45.27, capturing an event he won six years ago. David Krummenacker, the 2003 world indoor champion, was second at 1:46.80.

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