Monterola Claims Second Consecutive Big Sky AOTW Honor

Senior pole-vaulter is two-for-two in Athlete of the Week opportunities this season

Keisa Monterola of the Eastern Washington University women’s track and field team was selected as the Big Sky Conference women’s field athlete of the week for the week of Jan. 21 after another strong performance with national championship implications in the pole vault at the UW Indoor Preview on Jan. 18.

Monterola entered the competition with the bar at 12-11 1/2 and cleared it on her second attempt. She then cleared the next height of 13-5 1/4 on her first try, tying a seasonal best and placing her second overall at the meet behind Washington’s Diamara Planell Cruz (13-11 1/4). Monterola’s mark sits first in the Big Sky by nearly a foot and ranks 14th in the nation among Division I competitors.

This is the sixth time the Venezuela-native has been named Athlete of the Week since joining the squad as a junior-college transfer in the 2011-12 season. During her first season at Eastern, she earned the honors three times indoors and once outdoors. She has now claimed the honors in each of the two times she’s been eligible this season.

The former Venezuelan national record holder is competing in her final indoor season for the Eagles and has exhausted her outdoor eligibility. She is the current school record holder indoors (14-4) and outdoors (14-0), and owns the conference record indoors as well.

The senior out of Licro Caracas High School has won two Big Sky titles in the vault outdoors and one indoors for the Eagles. She placed fifth at the 2012 NCAA Division I Indoor Championships with a mark of 14-1 1/4 to earn All-America Honors, becoming just the second Eagle ever to do so since Kurt Kraemer placed fourth in the triple jump indoors in 2001.

Monterola will be back in action when the Eagles head to Moscow, Idaho for the Idaho Collegiate (Jan. 24) and Idaho Open (Jan. 25).

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