McEwen Scores Pole Vault NCAA Automatic Mark and School Record in Reno

Jan. 18, 2003

RENO, Nevada - University of Oregon redshirt senior Niki (Reed) McEwen upped the school indoor pole vault record and matched its overall school record in the USA Track and Field Pole Vault Summit in the Reno Livestock Events Center, Saturday.

The Newport, Ore., native won the top collegiate section with a clearance of 14-1 1/4 (4.30m), and edged April Steiner from Arkansas who also cleared a personal best (second, 13-9 1/4). Reed should vie for the nation's top spot in this week's collegiate rankings after easily edging the NCAA automatic mark of 13-9 1/4 (4.20m). Only one performer was listed on last week's rankings - Kira Sims of Akron (13-7 1/4).

Reed had owned a previous all-time best of 13-9 3/4 from the UW Quad indoors in 2002 - an indoor school record mark that teammate Becky Holliday also cleared that day. Previously, Holliday had solely owned Oregon's all-time best of 14-1 1/4 from the 2002 outdoor season.

Also winning a separate section Saturday, Eugene native and Duck junior Kirsten Riley exactly equaled the NCAA provisional mark of 12-9 1/2 (3.90m), and was only a half-inch off her personal best (12-10) that she cleared both indoors and outdoors in 2002.

Sophomore Hannah Moore, also added nearly two inches to her indoor best of and placed eighth in her section (11-7 3/4).

A day earlier, redshirt senior Becky Holliday opened her season Friday with a clearance at her opening height of 12-5 1/2, but failed to clear any other heights. Coaches indicated that the Sparks, Nev., Holliday was using only a short run-up, working on new technique, and trying out new and bigger poles.

Oregon's other entrant, redshirt senior Georgette Moyle did not compete Saturday due to a minor hamstring injury.

'We did a lot of good things,' Oregon assistant coach Mark Vanderville said. 'Niki finally got her first official 14-foot vault in a meet after going much higher in practice, and Kirsten and Hannah certainly have room to be happy. We're trying a lot of new things with Becky that will make her better down the road so she's just getting started. Georgette's been jumping well in practice, too, but her hamstring didn't feel right in warm-ups, so she backed off it.'

*More meet information can be found at the web site.

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