Paige Sommers ‘21 broke the U20 national pole vault record on Feb. 22, 2020 with a vault of 14 feet, 6 inches has propelled herself to a ranking of 4th in the world for her age group.
Sommers has been working hard all season to achieve this feat. She started training in seventh grade and has been vaulting ever since.
“It feels great,” said Sommers. “It’s definitely exciting and something I never thought I would accomplish.”
However, Sommers is attempting to charge forward and continue to break records in the future.
“14 feet, 10 inches would be the next goal,” said Sommers. This would be the all time national record for height in high school.
Sommers has also set personal goals for the rest of the season to make her a better vaulter not just a record breaker.
“[My goal is to] work more on speed and strength,” said Sommers.
Pole vaulting runs in the Sommers family. Paige Sommer’s father, Coach Sommers, also vaulted in high school and is currently the pole vaulting coach at WHS.
In fact, Paige Sommers tied her father’s overall high school record with this jump. However, it is not always about pole vaulting in the Sommers household.
Sommers recognizes the value of rest and usually takes some time off during summer and gears up for competition at the end of the break.
She started training in Aug. of 2019 and has been focusing heavily on the basics in order to achieve her record breaking aspirations.
“I just didn’t think about it [vaulting] and tried to stick to my technique,” said Sommers.