Pole Position: Park Vaults To New Heights Again

After a brief warmup ALA Queen Creek’s Julianna Park sat back and patiently waited. After all, as the reigning Division III pole vault champ, membership had its privileges Friday afternoon at Mesa Community College.

One by one a group of over 20 vaulters from around the state took their respective turns before the main event and before Park even changed into her track shoes.

Two hours later the senior cleared a person best 12-foot jump in her final prep meet and vaulted herself back into the winner’s circle as a state champion once again.

“It feels great and it definitely pumps me up for what’s coming up next,” Park said to Sports360AZ.com moments after accepting her first-place medal. “I was mostly set on a height and getting that height really made my day.”

Park began pole vaulting as a seventh grader during her first year participating in track. She was never scared of the heights back in middle school, simply because she was oblivious to what exactly she was doing sprinting full-speed down a runway with an oversized pole in her hands.

Six years later Park’s a two-time defending state champion who plans to walk onto the track team as a pole vaulter at ASU and pursue a career in journalism.

Her success on and away from the track isn’t a surprise to those closest to her.

“I’ve had the privilege of coaching her for all four years of high school,” ALA Specialty Coach Eric Bramwell explained to Sports360AZ.com. “Her dedication and work ethic have been unparalleled. She’s been one of the hardest working athletes on the team. She takes every practice, every challenge, every meet and always does her best. She never makes excuses and always looks to improve.”

Away from academics and track, she’s always looking to improve in a much different area.

“I love to write music, that’s one of the reasons why I want to pursue journalism,” Park said. “I write my own songs, play guitar and play the piano.”

Julianna Park is certainly always in tune, regardless the task at hand.