HS track and field: Kennedy Shank sets Shippensburg Invitational pole vault record

Kennedy Shank was not necessarily in the best position to set the meet record at the Shippensburg Invitational on Saturday morning.

Shank, a junior from Northern, was in danger of not even getting into the top two for the event, after missing her first two attempts at 11-6.

But she cleared that height on her third and final chance, and ultimately won with a meet record 12-6.

After struggling with 11-6, Shank cleared 12-0 and 12-6 on the first attempts.

“It’s just in how you run and how well you vault,” Shank said. “Things changed as the day went on.”

Shank had three attempts at 12-9 after that. She said her third try was the closest to getting over.

Although she was hoping for at least 12-0, the record was not on her mind.

“I wasn’t even sure what it was,” Shank said. “I just wanted to stay consistent with 12 feet. I know the girls who set the record.”

The previous mark of 12-0, was held by Carlisle’s Kathleen McPhillips, now vaulting at Villanova. Both Lebanon’s Erin Winters and South Western’s Erin Harman equalled that height and tied for second place.

Having the other two vaulters in the mix for so long helped Shank.

“It definitely helps me,” Shank said. “I think I do better under pressure, knowing there are others behind me.”

For all the updates throughout the day from the girls’ side of the Shippensburg Invitational, click here.

Shank will be vaulting at the Penn Relays next weekend for the third time in three years.

“That event is always fun,” Shank said. “I just go out to the middle of the field and take it all in.”

For the Penn Relays and the other future events, Shank said she is more concerned with being consistent than with setting more records.

“I don’t have any specific goal,” Shank said. “I just want to stay consistent with 12-0 or 12-6. Anything higher is a bonus. A 13-0 isn’t out of the question.”



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