Wills makes most of 'last chance'
Sophomore vaults 12-0; likely headed to NCAA meet
March 5, 2011
Mackenzie Wills pole vaulted 12-0 to claim the title at the Mount Union Last Chance Meet. The effort all but guarantees the WC sophomore a place in the field in the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championship.
ALLIANCE — Mackenzie Wills made the most of her last chance Saturday as the Wilmington College sophomore cleared 12-feet to win the pole vault at the Mount Union Last Chance Meet. Wills’ season-best effort all but guarantees her a place in the field at the upcoming NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championship.
“I’m pretty confident this will get her in,” Wilmington assistant coach Kyle Wolf said. “The pressure of this being a last chance meet helped out. The need was there. This was the week she had to get the mark to get in the NCAA meet. That little bit of pressure helped push her over the edge and gave her another gear. Things kind of came together for her today better than they have in the past few weeks.”
Wolf said Wills’ improving physical health also was a bonus.
“That has a lot to do with it,” Wolf said. “We’ve kind of isolated the problem with her leg and worked around it. As the weeks have gone by, her runs have become more consistent. Instead of worrying about takeoffs or steps, we can focus on the mechanics of the vault. If you know you can take off down the runway and have your step be on and not all over the place, you’re going to be more confident to put a bigger jump together.”
Wills (Troy/Troy Christian) and the nation’s other top vaulters will be in action at 4:30 p.m. March 12 at the NCAA indoor meet at Capital University.
Other Wilmington vaulters also were in action at Mount Union. Sarah Gaskell (Troy/Troy Christian) cleared 11-0.25 to finish second while Liz Delehanty (Euclid/Villa Angela-St. Joseph) was ninth with an effort of 9-6.25.
“It’s been a good season for our pole vaulters,” Wolf said. “Having three vaulters kinds of puts us on the map a little bit. Rather than just having one person, we have three people who have the potential to score points.”