ABILENE – Abilene Christian head track and field coach Keith Barnier Wednesday announced that former all-Americas Cory and Angie Aguilar are returning to coach the Wildcats’ pole vault and multi-event athletes.
An eight-time all-America and the only pole vaulter in Lone Star Conference history to win four consecutive titles, Cory will serve the program as an assistant coach, while his wife, Angie, a two-time national champion, will aid the teams as a volunteer assistant.
“Cory and Angie are products of ACU and will help maintain the high standards of excellence Abilene Christian track is known for throughout the world,” said head track and field coach Keith Barnier. “The pole vault is an event ACU is well known for and who better to bring that rich tradition back than two of the Wildcats’ most decorated alumni’s.”
Cory previously coached at ACU for two seasons from 2008-09 and during that time his student-athletes collected 15 all-America citations, including three national championships won by Camille Vandendriessche.
Under Cory’s guidance, Vandendriessche became the first male athlete to win a multi-event competition at an NCAA indoor championship meet as he captured the heptathlon. The native or Paris, France also won three consecutive D-II national championships in the decathlon and captured the 2009 Texas Relays decathlon title against a field made up of all D-I athletes.
In addition to his work with Vandendriessche, Cory helped multi-athletes Chris Pounds and Jessica Withrow score runner-up honors at the 2008 outdoor national meet. His pole vaulters also were a constant presence at nationals with Cory Altenberg, Aaron Cantrell, Landon Ehlers, Stephen Toler and Callie Young all achieving all-America status.
At the conference level, Cory helped Toler and Young win back-to-back pole vault titles and coached Withrow to a third-straight heptathlon championship in 2008. Andy Henson won ACU’s second decathlon title in three years with 6,056 points in 2009.
Before transitioning to coaching, Cory was the Wildcats’ top vaulter each year from 2003 to 2006 and recorded his personal best height of 17-feet, .25 inches during his sophomore season of 2004. He also registered the 2005 team’s fastest mark in the 400-meter hurdles (53.07) as a junior.
Cory’s success in the vault helped the Wildcats extend their streak of Lone Star Conference championships to a 13th year. He won his first conference title in 2003 with a leap of 16-05.50 and recorded his best championship height of 16-11 two seasons later. Cory won the 2004 title with an effort of 15-4, and in 2006, he became the first Wildcat since Billy Olson to win four LSC pole vault championships after clearing a height of 16-2.75.
An academic all-Lone Star Conference honoree, Cory graduated from ACU in 2006 with a Bachelors of Science in exercise and sports science. The Crane, Texas native also is a certified personal trainer and a USA Track and Field certified coach.
Angie’s decorated pole vault career, which ran from 2003-07, included three conference titles and seven all-America honors, but her biggest claim to fame was becoming the very first female pole vaulter in NCAA history to win both indoor and outdoor national titles in the same year (2006). Her winning indoor height measured 12-11.50, while her outdoor mark reached 12-10.25 as ACU finished as the national runner-up at each meet.
In the spring of 2007, Angie tied her school and Lone Star Conference record of 13-3.50 in the outdoor pole vault to win at the Drake Relays for the second straight year. During indoor season she set a NCAA DII record of 13-7, becoming the fifth ACU vaulter to hold the best-ever mark in the women’s event, joining Jane McNeill, Meredith Garner, Val Gorter and Katie Eckley on the list.
After graduating from ACU Angie continued to compete open through 2013 and narrowly missed the 2008 Olympic Trials despite recording a personal best of 14-0. She’s also made several appearances at ACU’s Elmer Gray Stadium, where set a new facility record of 13.7-25 in May of 2012.
Since leaving Abilene in 2009 for Angie’s hometown of Odessa, Texas, the Aguilars have managed and owned several businesses, including a pole vault club, women’s-only fitness center and fitness boot camp. Cory also coached numerous district, regional and state champions during his time away from the Key City as well as multiple top-10 nationally ranked high school vaulters.