Jerome Junior, a recent graduate of Archbishop Curley High School in Baltimore, and Lindsay Pisanic, a rising junior at Mount de Sales Academy in Catonsville, won the only decathlon and heptathlon championships held for high school students in Maryland.
Junior, who will play major college football, won the MIAA title in the decathlon, which combines 10 track and field events. Pisanic won the IAAM heptathlon, which tests proficiency in seven of the sport’s disciplines.
For females, the multi-event includes the shot put, javelin, high jump, long jump, 100-meter hurdles, 200 and 800. The heptathlon is usually held over two days, but rain and lightning condensed it to one for four of the six competitors, including Pisanic, who totaled 2,553 points May 22 at The John Carroll School, Bel Air.
Pisanic placed first in three events: the 100-meter hurdles (18.18 seconds); shot put (23 feet, 4 inches); and javelin (73-7). She placed second in the high jump (4-6) and long jump (13-6); third in the 200 (31.14); and sixth in the 800 (3:32.10).
“No one from Mount de Sales had ever competed in this,” Pisanic said. “I was a little nervous, but it really was fun.”
Pisanic is coached year-round by Dick Estes, an assistant track and field coach from McDaniel College who formally ran the program at Woodlawn High School.
“I started at McDaniel last year and have worked on four or five events with Mr. Estes,” Pisanic said. “In fact, he’s the one who really told me about the heptathlon.”
During the school year, Pisanic is a cheerleader for the Sailors and the Mount St. Joseph High School, Irvington, football team. During the summer, she is a true equestrian.
While Pisanic’s strong suits are the field events, she knows that to become more competitive, the running events will need work and commitment over the summer.
The MIAA decathlon, meanwhile, went to Junior, who scored 5,305 points and upended the defending champion, Gilman’s Jabulani Blyden.
Longtime Archbishop Curley Coach Gene Hoffman, who initiated the multi-event championships four years ago, recalled the first time he grasped the potential of Junior, a 6-foot-2-inch linebacker who has a football scholarship to the University of Connecticut in the Big East Conference.
“I once watched Jerome play as a sophomore on the junior varsity basketball team,” Hoffman said. “I watched him catch the ball and dunk it from a standing position. I knew then, that Jerome had talent.”
Junior became one of the better discus throwers for the Friars over the years, and has led the team in the high jump and long jump, as well. Junior also has the explosive ability to get out of the blocks in the 100, handle a relay leg and throw the shot put.
BOYS DECATHLON RESULTS
1. Jerome Junior, Archbishop Curley, 5,305; 2. Jabulani Blyden Gilman, 4,777; 3. Will Fenwick, Gilman, 4,701; 4. Jacob Peery, Curley, 4,593; 5. John Rybak, Curley, 4,468; 6. Ken Lewis, John Carroll, 4,451.
GIRLS HEPTATHLON RESULTS
1. Pisanic, Mount de Sales, 2,553; 2. Julie Kolson, John Carroll, 2,422; 3. Morgan Buchanan, John Carroll, 2,241; 4. Christlyn McKaskil, Catholic, 2,145; 5. Julia Ryczak, John Carroll, 2,127; 6. Jasmina Price, Catholic, 1,918.