DES MOINES, IA -- Jennie Sewell became Sam Houston State's first NCAA regional outdoor track and field event winner Saturday as the senior from Rockwall won the women's pole vault with a mark of 13 feet, 11.75 inches.
Sewell defeated the NCAA national indoor pole vault champion Elouise Rudy of Montana State and the number one ranked outdoor vaulter Brysun Stately of Nebraska. The victory not only earns Sewell a berth in the NCAA national championships in Sacramento, CA, June 6-9, but also in the U.S. National Track and Field championships in Indianapolis, IN, June 27-29.
"Jennie had an awesome day today," Sam Houston head coach Curtis Collier said. "She went toe-to-toe with the two best vaulters in the country and came through with a victory. She was in fourth place midway through the competition but came back strong to clear 4.16 meters on her first attempt and 4.26 meters on her second to win the title on the basis of feweest misses."
Stately also vaulted 13 feet 11.75 inches but had seven misses compared to Sewell's five.
A seven-time Southland Conference champion (four indoors and three outdoors), Sewell remains undefeated in outdoor competition this spring, winning her ninth competition in a row. Sewell has won 21 pole vault titles during her Sam Houston State career.
Sewell will be making her third trip to the NCAA outdoor championship meet. She placed 15th in 2004 and 20th in 2005. Her previous best finish at NCAA regionals was 7th in both 2004 and 2005.
Sewell's mark of 13 feet, 11.75 inches Saturday is a Sam Houston State school record, breaking her own mark of 13 feet, 7.25 inches set in 2005 at the Texas Relays.
Sam Houston State men's pole vaulter Matt Adkisson also will be competiting in the NCAA Championships at Sacramento, CA. Adkisson was the runner-up in the men's competition Friday