Berkshire senior Dana Shale accomplished one goal on Friday and next week she hopes to check off another.
Shale cleared 9-feet, 8-inches to finish second in the pole vault at the Division III Massillon Perry Regional track meet and earned a berth into next week’s state championships at Westerville North High School.
“It is very exciting, especially since it’s my senior year and I’ve been working so hard since day one,” Shale said. “I’m glad I get to have one more week and have the chance to compete at state this year. It’s definitely going to be something I’m going to remember forever.”
Shale passed on the first three heights and easily cleared 8-feet, 6-inches on her first vault. She then needed just one vault to clear 9-0 and 9-4. It took three tries to get over the bar at 9-8. She attempted to match her personal record of 10-feet, 4-inches on her final three vaults but settled for her runner-up finish.
“I was more than satisfied, even though it wasn’t a PR,” she said. “I only vaulted 9-8, but I’m still so happy I qualified to state. There’s always next week to PR.”
The 2020 state track meet was canceled due to COVID but in 2019, the seventh and eighth place vaulters tied with a best height of 10-feet, 6-inches.
To earn a spot on the podium, Shale knows she’ll have to aim for a new PR.
Managing her nerves only adds to the challenge.
“I plan on doing what I’ve done every other meet, which is just staying calm and going over my steps and motions and telling myself it’s just another meet,” she said.