Aug. 17, 2009
Bruin alum Chelsea Johnson tied for silver in the pole vault on Monday at the 12th IAAF World Championships in Athletics at the 1936 Olympic Stadium in Berlin, Germany.
Johnson, who earned a spot at Worlds with a second-placing showing at the USATF Championships in June, became the first medalist for Team USA on the women's side. Competing in her first World Championship meet, Johnson cleared a season-high 15-3 to tie for second, earning a silver medal in the process. Poland's Monika Pyrek also will receive a silver medal for her clearance of 15-3 as well.
Johnson cleared the first three heights on her first attempt - 14-5.25 (4.40m), 14-11 (4.55m) and 15-3 (4.75m). She missed all three attempts at 15-7 (4.75m).
With her performance, Johnson joins Stacy Dragila (Gold - 1999, 2001) as the only U.S. women ever to medal at a World Outdoor Championships in the pole vault (stat courtesy USATF).
"I knew this year I was going to make the team," said Johnson. "I knew I was going to medal. Things have been going really great this year. That was a goal to come here and medal. Silver is great. I have been 100 percent confident. I was ready to go with my eye on the prize. That was the mindset coming in here, going clean for the first three rounds. It was just like in Eugene, make every height on your first attempt. That's what I did today. It is nice to get it done with and rest while the rest of the girls are battling it out."
Also on Monday, Sheena (Johnson) Tosta advanced to the next round of the 400m hurdles after earning an automatic spot with her fourth-place run of 56.00 in the opening rounds.
*quotes courtesy USATF.org.
For a story on Johnson's rise to the podium, click here.