Feb. 13, 2014
NEW ORLEANS - Redshirt junior pole vaulter Merritt Van Meter continues to rack up honors and accolades as she was named the Greater New Orleans Amateur Athlete of the Month for January, announced the Allstate Sugar Bowl on Thursday.
The monthly award-winners are chosen by the Greater New Orleans Sports Selection Committee and is sponsored by the Allstate Sugar Bowl.
Van Meter, a native of Metairie, La., and a high school graduate of Country Day High School, competed in two meets during January, including one in which she set the school record in her specialty event. At the New Mexico Cherry and Silver Invitational on Jan. 25 in Albuquerque, N.M., Van Meter vaulted 4.27 meters (14-0) to break her own school record for the indoor campaign.
Her leap also stands as the top vault in Conference USA on the season, and is currently tied for fourth in the entire NCAA. For her jump on Jan. 25, Van Meter was named Tulane's first Conference USA Track and Field C0-Athlete of the Week since the 2010 season.
"Obviously, this is a very special honor for her, being a New Orleans native and having graduated from a local high school," stated the director of Tulane track and field, Eric Peterson. "She has a lot of pride in representing Tulane from an athletic standpoint. It's so great to see her achieving at such a high level and leading our team the way she does. I can't wait to congratulate her on this honor."
The Greater New Orleans Sports Selection Committee has been selecting an Amateur Athlete of the Month each month since 1958. The athlete must be a native of the greater New Orleans area or must compete for a team in the metropolitan region in order to be eligible. Each of the monthly award winners will be honored in the summer at the Greater New Orleans Sports Hall of Fame Induction and Awards Ceremony, hosted by the Allstate Sugar Bowl.
Van Meter will compete in the Southern Miss Cupid Classic on Friday, Feb. 14 in Birmingham, Ala.
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