Stuczynski is meeting expectations she never had
As recently as three years ago, Jenn Stuczynski had never propelled herself higher than 5'5'', which was good enough for the school high-jump record at Roberts Wesleyan College in Rochester, N.Y. In May, the 25-year-old, now with pole in hand, vaulted 16 feet at the Reebok Grand Prix, breaking her own American record.Before turning to the vault, Stuczynski was a gifted all-around athlete who set Roberts Wesleyan records in the javelin, 400-meter hurdles and basketball scoring. Still, she was initially reluctant to pick up a pole. "I knew she could be great, even though she'd never tried vaulting," says her coach, Rick Suhr. "She thought I was crazy."
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Dimity McDowell is a contributor to ESPN The Magazine.