Inches From Greatness - - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Inches From Greatness

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He started Pole Vaulting in 6th grade. In a small Montana town with just 200 people.

Now ten years after his feet first touched the runway Minot State Junior Pole Vaulter Kirk Capdeville is ranked ninth in the nation.

And as Derek Hackett tells us he is within inches of qualifying for nationals.

Sprinting, swinging then snapping themselves over a dozen feet into the air. As crazy as it sounds most Pole Vaulters try to reach the average height of a house-- little by little--inch by inch...

(Kirk Capdeville/ MSU Junior Pole Vaulter) " There are so many different things that go into pole vaulting...Your run, your plant, your swing, your push off, your turn. I guess you just have to fine tune every little technique that you can and hopefully it pays off and you get those extra inches.

A quarter inch--that's how much extra Kirk needed to qualify for nationals his sophomore year in 2013.

(Cody Goetz/ Pole Vault Coach) "Last year he vaulted 16 (feet) 2 and 3/4 (inches), I believe. He was tied for 16th with two other athletes and since only 16 go to nationals and he wasn't chosen."

Coming so close to the National Championships but missing it by so little was undoubtedly frustrating for Kirk. But, after all, it's a new season with new goals.

(Kirk)"I plan to go quite a bit higher than 15' 11" hopefully. 17 feet is kind of what I'm shooting for so if I fix my runway and put up a better plant those things should take care of themselves."

Currently Ranked 9th in the nation with a best jump of 15 feet 11 inches -- Kirk's ceiling is high this season.

(Cody Goetz) "I think he can be a 16' 6" - 17 foot vaulter. He just has to put everything together. His big thing now is to stay healthy. Last year he battled hamstring injuries and other injuries along with that. As long as he can stay healthy I think he definitely can do it."

(Kirk Capdeville) "I feel pretty good, this is the healthiest I've been in a very long time. So, that's hopefully a good sign"

Reaching that 17 foot mark--the average height of a house-- would vault Kirk into the National Championships--but to get there he'll have to do it one inch at a time.

In Minot, Derek Hackett, KX Sports.

Kirk and the rest of the Beaver's Track and Field team will head to NDSU for the 'Thundering Herd Classic" this Friday.

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