The third time was the charm for Cal Poly Pomona pole vaulter Justin Ellerbee. In his third trip top the NCAA Division II championships Ellerbee broke the Cal Poly Pomona pole vault record and placed first with a mark of 17-6.5 on Saturday at Grand Valley State (Mich.).
He’s now the ninth national champion in the history of CPP men’s track and field and the first since 1994.
Ellerbee is also the first pole vaulter in school history to win the national title.
Ellerbee competed against the past two champions: Jordan Yamoah of Texas A&M Kingsville and Jeff Piepenbrink of Pittsburg State. In the end, Ellerbee walked away victorious at 17-6.5 while Yamoah and Piepenbrink followed in second and third at 17-2.75.
Ellerbee is now a two-time All-American, having placed fifth at the 2014 National Championships. In his nationals debut as a sophomore in 2013, he finished 13th.
Teammate Rodger Mantor, joined Ellerbee on the awards podium, finishing fourth. That finish gave him All-American honors as well.
The junior from Simi Valley came into the event ranked eighth nationally and exceeded that ranking by going a personal best of 16-10.75