Skip to main content

TRACK & FIELD: Male Athlete of the Week, Shippensburg's Zach Greenawalt breaks school record in pole vault

After a successful 2014 and indoor season, Shippensburg pole vaulter Zach Greenawalt knew it was only a matter of time.

And last Wednesday, that time came for the Greyhound senior. Greenawalt broke the Shippensburg school record, clearing 12-6 in Ship's first dual meet of the season against Greencastle-Antrim. He is this week's Public Opinion Male Athlete of the Week.

"It was something I expected out of myself coming into the season," Greenawalt said. "I finished last year just one inch shy of the record, and I cleared 13-3 in the indoor season, so I knew I had the ability. It was just a matter of time."

Greenawalt opened the season at the Tim Cook Invitational, where he cleared 11-6, but it all came together on Wednesday.

"Everything just seemed to fall into place," Greenawalt said. "I was very focused that day, and the wind seemed to break at the right time. I just pushed myself, I felt good flying over the bar, and when I hit the mat and saw the bar was still up there, I was ecstatic."

Greenawalt isn't an excellent pole vaulter by chance. He's been working at his craft throughout his high school career.

Ship coach Mike Sassin said, "Zach is very dedicated to the sport. He has been going to VaultworX year round for the last three years."

Greenawalt said, "There are a lot of things to think about when I go to vault, but I think I've gotten good at staying focused on my technique."

Greenawalt has high expectations for the rest of the season. He expects to qualify for districts and hopes to qualify for states after that.

"I know last year the district standard was 13-3, and I've cleared that indoors," Greenawalt said. "Once it gets warmer and nicer, I should be able to do that again. But when it comes to states, we only get one shot to qualify (at districts), so I'm going to have to be very focused for that meet."

Sassin said, "I expect him to qualify for districts, after that it all depends on how he performs there. The top four finishers at districts last year were all seniors, and he will have to make it into the top five to get into states."

Greenawalt will attend Shippensburg University in the fall and plans to major in international business management. He plans to try to vault for the university and also possibly get into coaching.

Sport: Track & field

Event: Pole vault

Grade: Senior

Parents: Chad and Julie Greenawalt

Other interests: Outdoors activities like hunting and kayaking

Pro athlete most admired: Renaud Lavillenie

Three people he'd like to have dinner with: Lavillenie, Adam Sandler and Oprah Winfrey.

Statistics: Greenawalt started the dual meet season in style last week ... He broke the school record in the pole vault, clearing a height of 12-6 against Greencastle-Antrim.