Ravenscroft's Wesley Frazier remains patient, sets national 5,000 record

tstevens@newsobserver.comMarch 11, 2013 

Wesley Frazier of Ravenscroft set the U.S. high school girls national record in the 5,000 meters last weekend while winning the New Balance Indoor national championship in New York City.

Frazier sprinted down the stretch to overtake national record-holder Erin Finn, the defending national champion, and win by 1/100th of a second in 16:18.01.

Finn, a senior at West Bloomfield, Mich., set out to break her own national record in the race and led almost the entire way. She had a sizeable lead until Frazier began her sprint on the final two laps. Frazier slipped past Finn at the tape.

“I don’t know where that last sprint came from,” Frazier told reporters after the race. “I just felt so good.”

Frazier was more than 12 seconds behind with less than 1,000 meters left, but despite Finn’s closing sprint, Frazier won on the last stride.

“I didn’t know if I could catch her,” Frazier said. “She was going so fast.”

Frazier said that she often starts too quickly in indoor races and was determined to not go out too fast. She resisted quickening her pace even though Finn built a big lead in the early part of the race.

The finish was so close that the meet announcer said that Finn had set a new national record. Both runners beat Finn’s old mark.

Frazier, a Duke University recruit, added a victory in the two mile on Sunday with a 10:12.23, the fastest time ever by a North Carolina high school girl.

Ryen Frazier, Wesley’s younger sister, finished 12th (17:36.28) in the national championship race.

Cary’s Bakri Abushouk was fourth in the boys two mile (9:03.53), and teammate Layla White was third in the girls 400 (54.56). Knightdale’s Marquavious Johnson was sixth in the 400 (48.33)

The Knightdale boys 4x200 and 4x400 relay teams were second (1:28.86 and 3:18.89), as were the Wakefield girls 4x200 and 4x400 relays (1:37.34 and 3:44.84).

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