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Female Athlete Of The Year

July 29, 2006|By Jeff Tully

Ginny English had a decision to make prior to her junior year at Burbank High.

She had just completed her sophomore season with the Bulldog track and field team in which she set a lower-division school record in the girls' pole vault.

Things looked set for her final two seasons in track, as she had her sights set on breaking the varsity pole vault mark.

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The only problem was English was also a member of the Burbank choir, and singing had become an important part of her life.

"I was just being pulled in two directions when it came to track and choir," English said. "Along with my schoolwork, I just didn't have enough time to devote to both. So, I knew I had to make a decision."

Her parents, Michael and Carolyn, left the choice entirely up to their daughter.

After weighing the benefits of both activities, Ginny told her parents about her preference.

"She came up to us and said, 'In 10 years, I won't be able to pole vault any more. But I will be able to sing in 10 years,' " Carolyn English said. "I thought that was a very intelligent decision coming from someone so young."

Added Ginny: "Pole vaulting really takes a toll on your body, so I knew I only had a few more years left to compete. Although I loved being in the choir, I wanted to see what more I could accomplish in track and field."

English's decision to stick with pole vaulting paid off for her, and the Bulldog program.

As a senior this past season, English broke that coveted school record, won her second straight Foothill League championship and made her second consecutive trip to the CIF Southern Section Division II finals.

It was because of her accomplishments that English was chosen the All-Area Female Track and Field Athlete of the Year by the sportswriters and editors of the Burbank Leader, Glendale News-Press and Foothill Leader for the second straight year.

English's senior season provided a fitting ending to her accomplished career at Burbank. Despite being just 4 feet 10, she was able to be a big-time contributor and one of the Bulldogs' most consistent scorers.

Her personal best of 11 feet 3 leaves a challenging mark for future Bulldog vaulters to shoot for. And her two league championships make her the most decorated female vaulter in school history.

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