BERTRAND — Wind-aided or wind-hindered, that’s the question surrounding Tyrell Younger’s meet-record vault Friday at the Bertrand Invitational.
Vaulting in a steady 25-mph wind, Younger cleared the bar at 14 feet, 2 inches — the new meet record — then he went for 15 feet.
As he dropped to the pad on his second attempt at what would have been a personal record, fans cheered and coach Bill Ford thrust his arm in the air.
Then came the groans as the bar floated down.
“It felt really good. I was feeling good on that jump,” Younger said. “I had it cleared all the way up until I was coming down and my chest just nicked it.”
While falling, he watched the bar wiggling on the standards.
“I was looking at it. I was making sure it stayed up. But it came down,” Younger said.
Was it because he nicked it, or was it because of the wind that often blew the bar off the standards between jumps? No one will ever know.
“I might have gotten it on a good day. I don’t know for sure. It was close,” Younger said.
Younger entered the competition at 12-6, well above the height that eliminated the rest of his competition. He sailed over that height with ease. Then he missed his first attempt at 13-6.
“I wasn’t near my mid-mark on that one,” Younger said of his approach.
Blame that on the wind that was pushing him down the runway and messing up his approach. But what the wind took away on the approach, it made up for at the end.
“When I get tall closer to the end of the vault, it really helps me explode up and get up into the air,” Younger said.
Younger ironed out the problems with his approach on his second attempt at 13-6. The meet record fell on his first attempt. Of his three attempts at 15 feet, the second was his closest and at least gives him encouragement for the rest of the season.
“The (Class D) state record is 15-4. I’m trying to make it 15-5 or 15-6. That’s a big goal for me,” he said.
Younger had a big day for the Vikings, who won the meet with 136 points, bettering runner-up Mullen by nearly 50 points. Besides the pole vault, he won the 100-meter dash and the 300-meter hurdles.
Teammate Cole Kennedy also won three events — the 800, the 1,600 and the 3,200.
In the girls’ events, Loomis Skylar Hadley won the 100-meter dash, the 100-meter high hurdles and the 300-meter low hurdles. Eustis-Farnam’s Jessica Deterding won the 400 and the triple jump. And Bertrand’s Kristine Edgren won the shot put and discus.
Bertrand’s girls made it a clean sweep, scoring 103 points to runner-up Mullen’s 90.