Liam Landau clearing 15-09, courtesy of Ross Koehler.
Well all-time lists are there for a reason, to measure our current greats against the past, and this year's pole vault season is starting to become a race to see who can make the most history. Three vaulters competing in 2019 rank within the top eight all-time for New Jersey indoor.
On Wednesday during the Big North Divisional Championships another lead change took place. Liam Landau of Pascack Hills vaulted a US#8 height of 15-09, that is sixth all-time for New Jersey indoor and a Bergen County record.
It should also be said this was after already earning gold in the American Division long jump, 21-04 NJ#6, high jump, 6-00, and 55m hurdles, 8.04. All taking place at the beautiful Ocean Breeze facility in Staten Island, NY.
I have a feeling we haven't seen the end of this season long showdown.
This happens less than two weeks after another New Jersey vaulter, Bradley Jelmert, moved into sixth all-time clearing 15-07.25 US#9. That same day Landau had cleared 15-06 only to come home and see Jelmert's height as the state lead.
The Watchung Hills Reg junior Jelmert is now seventh on the all-time list behind Landau's most recent height.
Before all that went down Delsea Regional junior Nico Morales was the first to really kick off the season when he cleared 15-06 US#13 back in mid-December, he is currently tied for eighth all-time. He's won five meets so far this season clearing at least 15-00 four times and 15-06 twice.
Video of Bradley Jelmert clearing 15-07.25, courtesy of Watchung Hills TF.
That makes three boys from this 2019 season all within the top eight all-time in New Jersey indoor history. And with so much time still to go there is potential for more to join them this season and greater heights to be achieved. We may even learn more this weekend during the NJSIAA State Relay Championships.
Landau and Morales will both see each other in the Group 2 Championship Friday night to potentially push each other to new heights. Jelmert will be vaulting in the Group 4 competition on Saturday morning.
|Boys NJ All-Time Indoor Pole Vault|
|1st - 17-0 - Bill Lange - Bridgewater East - 1980|
|2nd - 16-03.25 - Adam Sarafian - Ocean Township - 2004|
|3rd - 16-02.25 - Don Heyburn - Cranford - 1980|
|4th - 16-01.25 - Craig Hunter - Robbinsville - 2013|
|5th - 15-10 - Bill Hartley - Southern Regional - 1979|
|6th - 15-09 - Liam Landau - Pascack Hills - 2019|
|7th - 15-07.25 - Bradley Jelmert - Watchung Hills - 2019|
|T-8th - 15-06 - Nico Morales - Delsea Regional - 2019|
|T-8th - 15-06 - Vince Reilly - St. Joe's Metuchen - 1977|
|T-8th - 15-06 - Eric Richard - Bridgewater East - 1981|
|T-8th - 15-06 - Dan Batdorf - West Deptford - 2008|
|T-8th - 15-06 - Casey Dicesare - Irvington - 2005|
|T-8th - 15-06 - Luke Annichiarico - NV Old Tappan - 2014|
While Landau, Jelmert, and Morales all battle for the state lead and to see who can climb the furthest on the all-time list others such as Conor Reilly of Union Catholic, Simon Schenk of Princeton, and even another Morales from Delsea named Marco should also be on your radar.
Connor Reilly is NJ#4 so far at 15-0, and is eyeing up 16-00 attempts. Simon Schenk was the top returner from last indoor season with 15-0, while he has a 13-06 clearance in 2019 he's still working his way back from a hip injury and made strong attempts at 14-00 during the Lavino Relays. Improvement is on the horizon.
For more perspective on Schenk he and Landau were the only two returning from the 2018 outdoor season over 15-00, Landau exploded to a PR of 15-07.5 last spring and Schenk was over 15-01 as a sophomore.
With six of the top seven in New Jersey so far this season only in their junior year we have a pretty bright future ahead in the event. And this constant push to break barriers and rise up the all-time list will surely help keep it interesting all year long.
And this is just the boys pole vault. Sydney Woods of NV Demarest has cleared 13-0.75. She moved up to second all-time indoors for New Jersey with that clearance back in mid-December. Only the 2004 state record of 13-05 by Danielle O'Reilly of Shawnee stands in her way.
New Jersey's Top Four Against the Country