Saturday, July 30, 2005


Some Fort Wayne athletes are doing quite well, writes David Woods in this morning's Indianpolis Star:
Until 2003, the Indiana high school state track and field meet didn't offer a girls pole vault event.

Friday, the state -- or city of Fort Wayne, to be precise -- produced two national champions a few minutes apart.

Katie Veith vaulted 13 feet, 11/2 inches at IUPUI's Carroll Stadium to set a Junior Olympics record for intermediate girls (ages 15-16). She missed three tries at what would've been a national record of 13-61/4 for high school sophomores.

Shortly before, Brianna Neumann vaulted 12-71/2 to win the title for young women (ages 17-18).

The former gymnasts went 1-2 at state, with Neumann (Northrop) beating defending champion Veith (Homestead). Neumann, whose best is 13-21/4, and Veith rank Nos. 7 and 9 in the nation.

Those girls, along with several other talented local vaulters, are coached by Northrop's Bob Shank.
Fort Wayne has become a vaulting Mecca. Shank coached six vaulters there, including his 14-year-old son Corey, a 14-footer.

Other high schoolers in the group are Abby Kimball (Carroll), third in the state among girls; Seager Wilson (Northrop), a 16-3 vaulter; and Jonathan Hall (Homestead), who went 15-11 Thursday for fourth in the Junior Olympics.

"We may never have this nucleus of kids again," Shank said.
What do you think, Tracy...City of Champion Pole Vaulters?

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