EUGENE, Ore. — South Dakota alumnus Chris Nilsen won the silver medal in the pole vault at the 2022 World Athletics Championships in Athletics Sunday night at Hayward Field.
Nilsen, a 2020 graduate of the University of South Dakota, won his third world championship medal in the past 12 months. He won silver at the pandemic-delayed Tokyo 2020 Olympics last August, bronze at the 2022 World Indoor Championships in Serbia and now silver on US soil at the 2022 World Outdoor Championships. .
Nilsen cleared 19 feet, 5 ¾ inches (5.94 m) on his first attempt to secure the silver medal. He was one of three athletes to make the height. Olympic champion Mondo Duplantis won the event beating his own world record, 20-4 ½ (6.21m).
A native of Kansas City, Missouri, Nilsen was a three-time NCAA champion for the Coyotes. After college, he won back-to-back U.S. championships in 2021 and 2022. Nilsen holds the U.S. indoor record of 19-10 ¼ (6.05m) from the Perche Elite Tour in France in March and jumped a better height in outside of 19 -8 ¼ (6.00m) at my house in Vermillion during USD Twilight in May.
Nilsen added to Team USA’s medal tally. The United States won a record 33 medals at the 2022 World Championships in Eugene, the most of any country in the competition’s history. It was the first time that the world championships were held on American soil.