NCAA Women’s Pole Vault — Leon Tops Tough Group

Gabriela Leon became only the third 15-footer in meet history. (KIRBY LEE/IMAGE OF SPORT)

WITH 4 CLEARING 14-9 (4.50) and 3 over 14-11 (4.55), this was the highest group of jumpers in meet history. Previous highs were 14-5¼ (4.35) in ’19 for 4 and 14-7¼ (4.45) in ’15 for 3.

The final 4 were formchart leader Gabriela Leon, NCAA Indoor winner Rachel Baxter (formchart #2), rising star Amanda Fassold (#4) and defending champ Lisa Gunnarsson (#5).

Leon, Baxter & Fassold all cleared 14-9 (4.50) on first attempt, Arkansas’s Fassold equaling her PR as the other two shared the lead. Leon took sole possession of the lead at 14-11 (4.55), with Fassold PRing again as both cleared on first. Gunnarsson needed two tries as Baxter went out.

A first-attempt clearance at 15-1 (4.60) solidified things for Leon as Fassold missed a pair then passed to 15-3 (4.65). Leon missed her first, but so did Fassold, who was thus out.

With the victory secure, the Louisville senior put the bar up to 15-5 (4.70) for two attempts at the WC standard. Those opportunities don’t come every day and, unfortunately for Leon, the rain came just before her two unsuccessful attempts at that height.

Leon, a 2-time ACC champion, had passed at 4.35 and 4.45 after the increments were reduced to 5cm. Her coach of 5 years, Brooke Rasnick, was asked what gave her so much confidence to pass heights amongst this august group of jumpers. Her response was, “She’s had great practices and has made 4.70 [15-5] in practice. So, we knew she was ready, we did not want to waste attempts at lower bars and we just wanted to go for the win and go for the standard. She is one of the best competitors I have ever watched so we knew that she was going to be ready to go and go after the win.”

Said Leon about the rain, “Yeah, I came in and I was ready for anything today. Headwind, rain, anything — I was competing today.”

Fassold is quite the find for Arkansas. She was a 9-6 (2.89) jumper in high school (Glencoe, Hillsboro, Oregon) who competed at Azusa Pacific for 3 years then entered the transfer portal after last season with a PR of 14-½ (4.28).


WOMEN’S VAULT RESULTS

(June 09)

1. Gabriela Leon (Louis) 15-1 (4.60) (3, =4 NCAA) (also 14-11/4.55 [=4, =7 NCAA];

2. **Amanda Fassold (Ar) 14-11 (4.55) PR (=5, =8 NCAA) (also 14-9/4.50 =PR);

3. Lisa Gunnarsson’ (LSU-Swe) 14-11 (=5, =8 NCAA);

4. Rachel Baxter (VaT) 14-9 (4.50);

5. ***Julia Fixsen (VaT) 14-5¼ (4.40);

6. **Sydney Horn (HPt) 14-3¼ (4.35);

7. Sophia Franklin (MiSt) 14-3¼;

8. Sommer Knight (ECar) 14-1¼ (4.30);

9. Chloe Wall (TxT) 14-1¼; 10. *Bailee McCorkle (Ar) 13-9¼ (4.20) PR; 11. *Mackenzie Horn (HPt) 13-9¼; 12. tie, ***Chloe Timberg (Rut) & Tommi Hintnaus (KsSt) 13-9¼; 14. **Filippa Miller (FlInt) 13-9¼; 15. Makenna Barton (Wa) 13-3½ (4.05); 16. ***Marleen Mulla’ (SD-Est) 13-3½; 17. ***Olivia Lueking (Ok) 13-3½; 18. tie, *Aliyah Welter (Louis), **Erica Ellis (SFA) & *Kasey Staley (TCU) 13-3½; 21. **Brittany Bishop (Samf) 13-3½; 22. **Jaidyn Garrett (SD) 12-9½ (3.90); 23. Alyson Schwartz (GCan) 12-9½;… nh—**Mackenzie Hayward (Ar).

(best-ever mark-for-NCAA-place: 3–4, =5, =7, =9)

 

12-9½ 13-3½ 13-9¼ 14-1¼ 14-3¼ 14-5¼ 14-7¼ 14-9 14-11 15-1 15-3 15-5
Staley ppp xxo xxx
Gunnarsson ppp ppp o o ppp o xo xpp xo xxx
Fixsen ppp o o xo ppp xo xxx
Horn ppp o xo o o xxp x
McCorkle o o o xxx
Ellis ppp xxo xxx
Franklin ppp o o xo xxo xxx
Knight ppp o o o xxx
Baxter ppp o o o ppp o xo o xpp xx
Wall ppp o xo xxo xxx
Barton o o xxx
Hintnaus o xo xxo xxx
Leon ppp ppp ppp o ppp xo ppp o o o xpp xx
Timberg ppp xo xxo xxx
Bishop xxo xxo xxx
Horn xo o xo xpp xx
Fassold ppp o o o ppp xo xxo o o xxp x
Lueking ppp xo xxx
Mulla xo o xxx
Miller o xxo xxo xxx
Schwartz xxo xxx
Garrett o xxx
Hayward xxx
Welter ppp xxo xxx
3.90 4.05 4.20 4.30 4.35 4.40 4.45 4.50 4.55 4.60 4.65 4.70

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