Olivia Fabry has gotten some weird looks when she checks in at the pole vault pit this year.
Olivia Mabry receives them, too.
“Our names can get confused so easily,” said Mabry, a sophomore at Bay Port (Green Bay, Wis.) High.
Fabry, a freshman at De Pere (Wis.) High, added: “Every time we (compete) anywhere they just stare at us. We’re always right next to each other in the order, so it’s like, ‘Mabry is on deck. Fabry is in the hole.’”
Fabry and Mabry have caught people’s attention this track and field season from the start due to the similarity of their names.
Adding to the confusion is both of their names just happen to appear high on Wisconsin Track Online’s state honor roll.
Fabry entered the week as the state leader in the girls pole vault with a height of 12 feet. Mabry is tied for fifth with a clearance of 11 feet.
“We’ve had people ask Olivia (Fabry) why she’s been on the state track and field (honor roll) twice,” said De Pere senior Kylie Swiekatowski, who is a three-time state medalist in the event. “They don’t realize it’s two different girls because it’s only a one letter difference. That’s been funny.”
As a freshman, Fabry is in her first season of competing at the high school level. Fabry and Mabry are newcomers to the local high school pole vaulting scene.
Meanwhile, Mabry is competing in Wisconsin for the first time after her family moved from Denver during the summer.
“I love meeting new people,” Fabry said about her first encounter with Mabry. “So, I went up to her and was like, ‘Hi, what’s your name?’ She’s like, ‘Olivia.’ I’m like, ‘Oh, my name is Olivia, too. What’s your last name?’ She said, ‘Mabry.’ I looked at her like, ‘What?’ I asked her how she spells that and she looked at me funny because who in the world asks somebody how to spell their last name?”
Fabry and Mabry met during the summer at the AP Vaulters club.
The two shared the first of many laughs when they realized the coincidence.
“It was like a natural bond right there,” Mabry said.
The similarities didn’t end there. They both did gymnastics growing up and shared other interests that allowed them to become friends rather quickly.
“We talk about all kinds of stuff,” Mabry said.
Fabry and Mabry competed at the same meet for the first time during a winter event at Carthage College.
Once the high school season began, they finished in first and second place in some of their first indoor meets together.
“She pushes me to do better because we’re so close in ability,” Fabry said.
Although they have similar names and talents, Fabry and Mabry don’t have plans to try and pull the “switch” at a meet.
“That would be funny, but I feel like everybody would get mad at us, though,” Mabry said. “They’re already confused by us.”