Greensburg Salem senior Courtney McQuaide’s vault coach set the bar two inches short of 12 feet, but didn’t tell her the exact height.
Just clear it, he said.
When she did, McQuaide reclaimed her school record and broke the meet record at the Butler Invitational on a soggy Friday afternoon that was far from ideal for pole vaulting. The cold and rain made her 11-foot, 10-inch vault more exceptional.
“After I cleared it, he told me I’d just broke the record,” McQuaide said. “It was exciting.”
McQuaide bettered both records by one inch. The school record, once owned by McQuaide, was taken last year by former teammate Cassidy Shepherd. Erie McDowell’s Alexandrea Acker had held the Butler meet record since 2007.
Vault coach Jeremy Lenzi didn’t want McQuaide thinking about either record until after she’d landed.
“Sometimes the kids get a little bit too worked up over the height,” Lenzi said. “When they’re the only one left, you have a little bit of control over where the bar goes. So, I told her to go down the runway, I was taking care of it. I didn’t want her to know. She didn’t have to worry.”
Butler’s Claire Weiland finished second at 10 feet.
McQuaide placed seventh last season in the WPIAL and PIAA Class AAA championships. But her confidence grew when she won the state indoor title this winter and then cleared 12 feet at indoor nationals. Her schedule this year will include a return trip to the Penn Relays and to outdoor nationals in June.
McQuaide tried 12-3 on Friday but fell short.
“We work in goals and dreams,” Lenzi said. “We believe a realistic goal for her is 12-6. The dream is 13-1, because that’s the state record.”
McQuaide switched to a new pole Friday. Rain has limited her to three outdoor practices, Lenzi said, so there’s still some adjustment to be made.
“She’s blowing through some of the lighter-weight poles,” Lenzi said. “She weighs 123 pounds, and she’s vaulting on a pole that’s rated 135 pounds. She’s a very strong kid. We got her onto a 140 today, and really she blew through that, as well. We need some more practice time so we can find the right combination.”
The rain had passed but the temperature was only in the upper 40s when McQuaide vaulted. Once the weather warms, her vault heights should increase, she predicted.
Shaler’s Brianna Schwartz broke meet records in both the 800 and 1,600. Also with meet records were California’s Kailyn Clancy in the shot put, Springdale’s Emily Lelis in the 100 hurdles, Fox Chapel’s Colin Martin in the 3,200, Fox Chapel’s Brandon Mitchel in the 300 hurdles and Hampton’s Caleb Smithco in the triple jump.
100: Kevin Garbark, West Mifflin, 11.18
200: Garbark, West Mifflin, 22.69
400: Kenny Baurle, Avonworth, 50.22
800: Brett Foster, Seneca Valley, 1:57.07
1,600: Nathan Sloan, Hampton, 4:19.37
3,200: Colin Martin, Fox Chapel, 9:25.34
110 hurdles: Ori Rinaman, Mars, 14.66
300 hurdles: Brandon Mitchell, Fox Chapel, 38.82
400 relay: Fox Chapel, 44.11
1,600 relay: Fox Chapel, 3:28.98
3,200 relay: Butler, 8:21.16
High jump: Noah Bostick, North Hills, 6-3
Pole vault: Caleb Sanford, McDowell, 14-0
Long jump: Brian Papich, Fox Chapel, 22-6.75
Triple jump: Caleb Smithco, Hampton, 48-1
Shot put: Luke Lewis, Hickory, 60-1
Discus: Jordan Geist, Knoch, 153-10.5
Javelin: Luke Smorey, Baldwin, 147-9.5
100: Ally Bartoszewicz, Vincentian Academy, 12.40
200: Bartoszewicz, Vincentian Academy, 25.39
400: Kayla Key, Vincentian Academy, 1:00.65
800: Brianna Schwartz, Shaler, 2:10.15
1,600: Schwartz, Shaler, 4:45.43
3,200: Marianne Abdalah, Vincentian Academy, 10:55.14
100 hurdles: Emily Lelis, Springdale, 14.61
300 hurdles: Ameriah Walters, Valley, 47.26
400 relay: Pine-Richland, 50.23
1,600 relay: Pine-Richland, 4:06.30
3,200 relay: Villa Maria Academy, 9:38.74
High jump: Julia Baxter, Butler, 5-2
Pole Valut: Courtney McQuaide, Greensburg Salem, 11-10
Long jump: Tori Soeder, Shaler, 18-0.5
Triple jump: Soeder, Shaler, 38-6.75
Shot put: Kailyn Clancy, California, 43-2.5
Discus: Clancy, California, 131-6
Javelin: Carly Harris, Shaler, 120-4
*** The articles that we post on this website are searched from the Internet and don’t reflect our views. VAULTER Magazine LLC. is bringing the pole vault news to the reader in one central location. ***