The sun was down and all of Madison Skelly’s competitors were gone. It was the perfect time to go for a record.
The Austintown Fitch junior stands alone as her school’s — and the All-American Conference Red Tier’s — best pole vaulter. On her first attempt, she cleared 10 feet even to beat the previous mark of 9 feet and finished Tuesday’s AAC Red Championships with a mark of 11 feet.
Pole vaulting is a sport that requires a lot of waiting before the payoff. The lights were coming on Fitch Falcon Stadium when she bowed out at 11-feet, six inches, hours after the girls started jumping at six feet.
Skelly does a lot of waiting to jump outside of meets and travels to Wooster twice a week to practice.
“It definitely paid off,” Skelly said of her three-hour drives.
The All-American Conference is an OHSAA-sanctioned league, created in 2008 as the result of the merger between the Trumbull Athletic Conference and the Metro Athletic Conference in Ohio. The league has 21 different member schools, with 17 sports offered throughout fall, winter and spring sports seasons.