Stefanidi takes gold, Morris silver in women’s pole vault

Stefanidi wins pole vault gold

Olympics: Track and Field-Evening Session

Gold: Ekaterini Stefanidi (Greece), 4.85m

Silver: Sandi Morris (USA), 4.85m

Bronze: Eliza McCartney (NZL), 4.80m

It was a night that saw many of the medal favorites bow out of competition early.

Reigning Olympic champion, American Jenn Suhr, who has been battling a virus during her time in Rio, found herself in a tight spot when she missed her first attempt at 4.60m. She bounced back and made it over, but was eventually eliminated when she was unable to make it over 4.70m.

Yarisley Silva, silver medalist in 2012 and the reigning world champion, also found herself off the podium when she was unable to clear the same height.

Other medal contenders included Alana Boyd of Australia and Liza Ryzih of Germany, both of whom were eliminated much earlier than expected – Ryzih at 4.60m and Boyd at 4.80m.
The biggest surprise of the night was Eliza McCartney, a 19-year-old from New Zealand, who vaulted a new personal best on her way to the podium and a bronze medal, just beating out the 32-year-old Boyd.
American Sandi Morris and Greece’s Ekaterini Stefanidi – an NCAA champion at Stanford University – were the only two to clear 4.85m, leading to a fight for the gold.
Stefanidi had fewer misses until this point, and after missing her third attempt at 4.90m, she just needed Morris to miss her last attempt.
It looked as though Morris was going to make it over, but she just brushed the bar on the way down, earning her the silver and giving Stefanidi the gold.
On the men’s side, American Sam Kendricks earned the bronze, while Thiago Braz da Silva of Brazil won gold and Renauld Lavillenie toook the silver.

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