ANN ARBOR, Mich. - Two pole vaulters, Kristen Denk and Sarah Bell, and jumper Sophia Falco provided the top Commodore highlights Saturday at the Power Five Invitational.
Denk, a redshirt sophomore transfer, became the third highest Commodore vaulter ever indoors when she cleared 13-2.25 on her second attempt. In addition to setting a seasonal best, Denk joins three current teammates as the only Vanderbilt vaulters to reach 13 feet indoors.
Denk's performance came as Bell, an two-time All-American for the Commodores, displayed the best form of her final season wearing Black and Gold. A fifth-year senior, Bell earned a fifth-place finish by matching Denk's 13-2.25 clearance on her first attempt. Bell's performance was an one-foot improvement over her effort two weeks ago at the Vanderbilt Invitational.
Neither Denk nor Bell could capitalize on three attempts at 13-8.25, the eventual winning height.
Sophomores Margaret Ollinger and Caleigh Lofstead both cleared 12-8.25 to finish just behind their Commodore teammates.
In other field events, Falco established new collegiate bests in the long jump and triple jump. Falco, a freshman from Lakewood Ranch, Fla., leaped 18-7 on her fourth attempt in the long jump, bettering her previous best of 18-4.25 achieved at the team's indoor opener in December. Falco's effort is No. 6 on the team's all-time indoor charts, and just shy of Tierney Price's 18-8 jump from last year that ranks fifth on the all-time list.
Falco, who also just missed a collegiate best in the 60-meter dash on Friday, earned a second seasonal best competing in the triple jump. She leaped 38-2, one inch longer than her Vanderbilt Invitational effort, on her third attempt to earn a ninth-place finish.
On the track, the Commodores' 4x400-meter relay foursome of Regan Clay, Jenn Edobi, Becca Schulte and Reagan Bustamante earned seventh place with a time of 3:46.88.
Ebodi and Bustamante also competed at 400 and 800 meters, running 55.75 and 2:12.20, respectively. Sophomore Kendall Derry also lowered her previous seasonal best in the mile with a time of 4:55.22.
Vanderbilt head coach Steve Keith looks forward to getting the squad back on campus and training toward the Music City Challenge, scheduled Feb. 9-10 at the Vanderbilt Multipurpose Facility. "This was a good meet for our team and I thought we did some good things, but we have to continue to progress as a team," Keith said. "We'll have a chance to get in that competitive frame of mind next weekend at home."
Vanderbilt results from second day of the Power Five Invitational:
Long jump - 8. S. Falco 18-7
Pole Vault - 5. S. Bell 13-2.25. 6. K. Denk 13-2.25. 12. M. Ollinger 12-8.25. 14. Caleigh Lofstead 12-8.25
Triple jump - 9. S. Falco 38-2
400 meters - 12. J. Edobi 55.75
800 meters - 13. R. Bustamante 2:12.20
Mile - 17. K. Derry 4:55.22
4x400-meter relay - 7. R. Clay, Edobi, Schulte, Bustamante 3:46.88