Zolan Long having successful pole vault season for Evart

Evart track coach Todd Scott talks to his team as a practice. (Pioneer photo/John Raffel)

EVART — Zolan Long has had an impressive junior season for Evart’s track and field team. It’s not quite over yet.

Long has especially been enjoying success in the pole vault. He gave early indication he could have a strong year in that event when he cleared 12 feet in an indoor meet at Grand Valley. Earlier this month in a Highland Conference meet at Marion, Long got his personal record of 12 feet, 6 inches.

“Last year, I ended the season at 11 feet,” he said. “When I worked on the pole vault over the summer at a camp in Reed City, I learned so much from the people at the camp.”

The emphasis, as Long recalls, was on technique.

“They help you with your plant, how you turn in the air, everything like that,” he said. “This year I’m hoping to get 13-6, maybe even 14 if I’m lucky. I’ll try to break the school record (of 14-1).”

He’s also had a strong season in the high jump with an effort of 5-4.

Long and teammate Richard Foster have been scoring points for the Wildcats in the pole vault.

“I think our team will be strong, but not as in previous years,” Long predicted, coming into the season. “We have the natural skills. We have to push hard. We have a lot of young people. We have a chance to do well in conference and regionals.”

Regionals are Saturday at East Jordan. The conference meet is home on May 22.

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Posted by John Raffel

John is a sports reporter with the Pioneer as well as the Herald Review and The Lake County Star. He also coordinates the weekly Pioneer sports outdoors page. He can be reached at (231) 592-8356 or by email at jraffel@pioneergroup.com.

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