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South Aiken vaulter eyes state record
By Charmain Z. Brackett | Correspondent
Sunday, August 19, 2007
As she enters her senior year at South Aiken High School, Allie Nicosia is pursuing some lofty goals.
Charmain Z. Brackett/Correspondent
Allie Nicosia, a rising senior at South Aiken High School, was the girls high school state champion pole vaulter in the spring.
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"I want to re-break my school record and break the state record," said Nicosia, a pole vaulter on the Thoroughbreds' track and field team.
Last school year, she broke her own school record of 12 feet with a vault of 12 feet, 3 inches. The state record is 12 feet, 7 inches.
Nicosia's best vault has been 12 feet, 4 inches, which she achieved at a club meet in Columbia.
Nicosia has been part of the Thoroughbred's track and field team since she was an eighth grader. The team's coach, Russ Busbee, suggested pole vaulting to her. She liked it and has been soaring to new heights ever since.
"It's really fun," she said.
Her freshman year, Nicosia finished third in the pole vault at the state championships. She was second as a sophomore, and last spring, she won the state AAAA title in the girls' event.
Nicosia won the event despite having mononucleosis, which was diagnosed earlier in the spring. Nicosia said she was concerned about missing training and not being able to compete, but doctors cleared her in time for the March 24 Coaches Classic.
After her state victory in May, she continued training and competing. On June 8, she won the vault in the South Carolina State Junior Olympics in Rock Hill, which qualified her for the region meet in Virginia. She placed second at that event July 12. At the national Junior Olympics in California, she finished in a three-way tie for seventh.
Nicosia has been named to the all-region and all-state teams throughout her high school career.
Nicosia has a few months before South Aiken's track and field season gets under way, but she won't stop training.
During the fall and winter, she does speed training and spends time on other exercises in the gym. She travels to Columbia twice a week to work with a coach on her vaulting skills.
Nicosia's pole-vaulting accomplishments have caught the attention of several college coaches. She has been contacted by the University of South Carolina, Coastal Carolina University, the University of Louisville and Columbia University in New York.
Nicosia said she hasn't decided on a school, and she will go "wherever I get a good offer."
She wants to pursue a career in the medical field.