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Pole vaulter Matt Schwartz's future is up in the air

Burroughs boys' track and field athlete has continued to reach impressive heights during his senior campaign.

April 22, 2014|By Jeff Tully, jeff.tully@latimes.com
(Tim Berger / Staff…)

Matt Schwartz has vaulted himself into some rarefied air at Burroughs High.

During his senior season, Schwartz has continued to reach notable heights in the boys' pole vault. What has been more impressive is the athlete's progression on the school's all-time pole vault list in perhaps Burroughs' most illustrious track and field event.

"To be among the best pole vaulters in school history is an honor," Schwartz said. "That list is pretty impressive. It's nice to go to school where the record is pretty high."

The list includes a former Olympic silver medalist and high school national record holder, a CIF Southern Section and Masters Meet champion and numerous league champions.

In a season that has seen its share of amazing moments, Schwartz has put himself at No. 3 on the Indians' all-time list, just one inch away from the runner-up spot.

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Schwartz will get a chance to add to his accomplishments when his Burroughs team takes on Burbank in the final Pacific League dual meet of the season at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday at Memorial Field. Along with the battle for city bragging rights, the meet holds an added significance in that the winner of the boys' meet will capture the league championship.

"Not just for me in the pole vault, but it looks like it's going to be an amazing meet in general," Schwartz said. "It is two great teams going at it. I don't even know when the last time Arcadia wasn't in the mix for a league title. It's just awesome for this to happen during my senior year. It's pretty amazing."

Schwartz will bring with him a great deal of momentum. The last two weeks, the senior has been able to continually better his personal record in the pole vault while continuing to climb up the all-time list.

His best effort came Saturday at Mount San Antonio College in Walnut. Competing in the Mt. SAC Relays, Schwartz placed first in the seeded event with an effort of 15 feet, 6 inches. Not only was it a personal best, but it set a new seeded record in the event.

That effort came on the heels of a PR of 15-1 Schwartz set April 16 in a league meet at Arcadia. That was one inch better than the 15-0 PR he achieved at the 47th annual Arcadia Invitational Track and Field Meet on April 12.

With his 15-6 effort, Schwartz now occupies the No. 3 spot on the Indians' all-time list, surpassing the No. 4 mark of Steve Morris, who vaulted 14-8 in 1967. He is just one inch below No. 2 Jon Switzer (15-7 in 1976).

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