ROCK HILL, S.C. – Carson-Newman freshman Tori Gaul (Salisbury, N.C.) was named the AstroTurf South Atlantic Conference Championships Field Athlete of the Week after her performance at last Saturday's Shorter Invitational.
"It's awesome. I was really surprised. I'm really glad my hard work is paying off and I can see different things happening," Gaul said of her award.
In the pole vault, the freshman bested the record that was set in 2012. Her vault was also three-tenths of a meter higher than any of her closest competitors. She is ranked fifth in the Southeast region in the event.
Gaul recorded two first-place finishes at the Shorter Invitational last weekend with top finishes in the pole vault with a vault of 3.04m and 400m hurdles after running the race in 1:03.93. In each event, Gaul reset the Carson-Newman school record. Her time is the quickest time in the Southeast region.
The Salisbury, N.C.-native reset her own school record in the 400m hurdles that she initially set two weeks ago at the PowerSox Invitational. Her time of 1:03.93 was three seconds quicker than the previous C-N record. She bested the second-place finisher by nearly a full second.
"I'm really motivated by the fact that I really want to qualify for Nationals and right now, I'm ranked 21st in the nation and to qualify, I have to be top-16," Gaul said of her time in the 400m Hurdles. "That's really pushing me to be better and I have a lot of help from coach (Tony) Parrilla and now Mark Stepp. I'm working really hard to get my team down."