ROME — Two injuries and two surgeries couldn’t keep Wesleyan senior Matthew Stainback from his goal.

Stainback won the Class A Private state title in the pole vault Friday, clearing 13 feet and coming close on his 13-6 attempt at Berry College.

“It meant a lot to win,” Stainback said. “It’s amazing, especially after the two surgeries. It really meant a lot. I’ve been working really, really hard on and offseason to get this done. Especially during wrestling season having to do two practices a day sometimes.”

Within the past two years, Stainback has had surgery on his knee to repair meniscus, an injury from pole vaulting, and another surgery on a fractured fibula and displaced bone. That injury happened when he rolled his ankle while skimboarding, and the ensuing surgery left four screws and a plate in his ankle.

“It’s been a tough go with knee surgery and ankle surgery the last two years,” Stainback said.

The reward came Friday.

“It’s incredible (to win state),” Stainback said. “As my coach said, you want to finish on a high note and I definitely finished on a high note this year.”

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