Kratzmeyer to defend state title


The reigning class 3A girls pole vault champion, Abeni Kratzmeyer will be the favorite going into the state track and field meet 10-11 May in Austin. Kratzmeyer recorded a vault of 13 feet to win the UIL Region 2 pole vault gold medal last week in Whitehouse.

Kratzmeyer will compete at 1:00 pm Friday, May 10 in Mike A. Meyers Stadium at the University of Texas. The vault pit is located at the northwest corner of the stadium.

Gate 4 is the nearest entrance and is close to the intersection of Robert Dedman Drive and Clyde Littlefield Drive.

The competition will be steep. Seven of the nine qualifiers have advanced to the state championship with vaults of over 11 feet. Kristen Sneed of Tatum, who will also be competing, finished second to Kratzmeyer at the regionals with a vault of 12 feet. Four challengers have state meet experience from 2018: Lane Cahill of Sonora, Sutton Finney of Clifton, Madi Gawthorp of Georgetown Gateway Prep, and Landry Topo of Lago Vista.

In only her second year in the sport, Kratzmeyer draws nothing but praise from her coaches.

Words describing Kratzmeyer give hope to all who question the young generation entering society. Character, humility, work ethic, maturity … she embodies them all.

As Athletic Director Luke Blackwell remarked, “Her character is revealed through her actions. Even though she is an elite vaulter, she helped her team by competing in two relays and the 100 meter dash. I don’t think there are many kids in Texas who are willing or able to do that.”

Mineola head girls track and field coach Bill Self described her as a “fantastic young lady” who works tirelessly and embraces both her individual sport and team. He added, “I have no doubt that Abby has a bright collegiate future.”

For those able to travel to Austin, an individual session ticket (for girls field events) costs $12.00.

A day pass is $20.00 and an all meet ticket $30.00. According to the UIL website, event awards will be received immediately following the event completion. The awards stand will be located behind turn number one.

Last year’s girls pole vault finals, which Kratzmeteyer won with a vault of 11-09.00, were posted at 5:59 pm on the day of the event to