Winning every week is not plausible.
West Virginia senior Tori Bertrand won the pole vault category at back-to-back events. That streak ended last weekend when she tied for 15th place at the Virginia Challenge.
Bertrand first claimed victory at Mason Spring Invitational on April 9 with a career-high leap of 3.91 meters. The following week, April 17, Bertrand got a 3.75 mark in the triumph at Bison Outdoor Classic.
"Our pole vaulters had a very good competition after having last week’s meet cancelled due to hazardous weather," said WVU head coach Sean Cleary following Bertrand’s victory at the Mason Spring Invitational. "Tori (Bertrand) earns our performance of the week, after jumping her lifetime best."
The 3.45 mark on April 22nd was not enough for a win or a top-10 finish. Regardless, Bertrand’s two big wins were no fluke. Her three scores this season are a solid improvement over last season.
Bertrand’s average mark of 3.70 meters this season is better than her best score of last year’s outdoor track and field season, a 3.50 meter mark. In the 2014-15 season, the North East, Maryland native averaged 3.35 meters per pole vault event. That average is worse than any score Bertrand has recorded this season.
Bertrand’s quick rise should not be surprising. Bertrand began her ascension this winter during the indoor track and field season. In four events, Bertrand averaged a 3.79-meter leap. Her best score was a 3.86-meter jump on Feb. 11 at the High Point Team Challenge.
The indoor success did not only occur during Bertrand’s senior season. As a junior, she averaged 3.77 meters per pole vault event. Her high mark of 3.82 meters captured victory at the Akron Invitational.
Bertrand has been more successful in a smaller sample size in the indoor track and field season. Regardless, she has won more events outside than she has inside. In the 2014-15 season, Bertrand finished in second place twice. This year, Bertrand has won two pole vault events. The slight improvement from year to year has paid off in the form of more victories for Bertrand.
If not for inclement weather on April 2 at the Miami Duals, Bertrand could have won a third consecutive pole vault event this season. The Mountaineers split up for three different events that weekend but were only able to participate in two of them, thus sidelining Bertrand and her fellow competitors in Miami, Ohio.
Bertrand will have a chance to add to this season’s average this week when West Virginia travels to Philadelphia for the Penn Relays. Bertrand has already put together an impressive season and now looks to only add to it from here on out.