Lake Forest’s Jillian Schwartz failed in her attempt to qualify for the finals of the pole vault at the London Olympics Saturday.
Schwartz, who was competing for the Israeli team thanks to her dual citizenship, missed three times at the 4.50 meter mark and was eliminated. She finished 18th overall of the 40 competitors but needed to be in the top 12 to advance to Sunday’s finals.
Schwartz, who graduated from Lake Forest High School in 1997, got off to a good start. She easily eclipsed the bar at the starting height of 4.10 meters (13.45 feet).
Schwartz then struggled at the next mark of 4.25 meters (13.94 feet). The 32-year old failed on her first two attempts there, but then nailed her third vault to advance.
Buoyed by her success, Schwartz easily cleared the next height of 4.40 meters (14.44 feet) on her first attempt. After she landed, she jumped from the mat, clapping her hands three times in excitement.
But the 4.50 meter (14.76 feet) height proved to be too much for Schwartz. She missed her first two attempts and her third vault was not better, driving her feet into the bar. She picked up her pole with a bit of visible disappointment, knowing her dream of advancing to the finals was over.