Jenn Suhr competes in the women's pole vault final at the IAAF World Indoor Championships at the Oregon Convention Center on March 17, 2016 in Portland, Ore.
American pole vaulters snatched up half of the medals available in the men’s and women’s events at the 2016 IAAF World Indoor Championships in Portland. Oregon, winning a gold and two silver medals.
Jenn Suhr led the U.S. contingent and soared to new heights Friday night, winning the women’s event and breaking the meet record at 4.90 meters. She needed only one attempt to clear the bar at each of the four heights she attempted. After posting her winning height of 4.9 meter, she asked that the bar be set for an attempt at the world indoor record of 5.04 meters, then reconsidered and called it an evening.
Suhr has won silver medals at both the outdoor (2013) and indoor (2008) world championships, but this was her first world title. She is the reigning Olympic champion in the event.
She was joined on the women’s medal stand by teammate Sandi Morris, who took the silver by clearing a height of 4.85 meters. The current U.S. indoor champion, Morris was part of a history-making evening as the top four women went over 4.80 meters. The bronze medal went to Ekaterini Stefanidi, Greece’s national champion who cleared 4.80 meters, becoming the first Greek woman to medal at an indoor championship since 2008.
On the men’s side, Sam Kendricks claimed silver with his effort at 5.80 meters, his best this season. After a miss at 5.85 meters, he and eventual winner Renaud Lavillenie of France were the only two competitors to attempt 5.90 meters. Kendricks missed twice, while Lavillenie cleared on his first attempt, then did the same at 6.02 meters to set the meet record. The bronze medal was won by Poland’s Piotr Lisek at 5.75 meters. Team USA’s Mike Arnold placed eighth at 5.65 meters.