South County’s Felecia Majors finds right fit with Tennessee track and field

April 25, 2013

South County’s Felecia Majors, a Tennessee commit, begins competition at the Penn Relays on Thursday. (Doug Kapustin/For The Washington Post)

Thursday’s print edition includes a story on South County senior Felecia Majors, detailing her rise into the area’s premier multi-event athlete ahead of this week’s Penn Relays.

Majors, who is entered in the long jump and 4×100 and 4×400 relays at the prestigious meet on Thursday, had never competed in organized sports before joining the track and field team at the Lorton school as a ninth grader, but she has joined any discussion of the top all-around athletes in the sport in Virginia history over the past four years. At New Balance Indoor Nationals last month, she was recognized as the only athlete in the country, boys’ or girls’, to score in seven events at her state meet.

Next fall, Majors, a two-time All-Met Winter Track Athlete of the Year, will head to Tennessee on a full athletic scholarship, a decision that came together after months of research in the late summer and fall. She also made visits to Cincinnati, Alabama, South Carolina and Tulane, where she had full scholarship offers. (Fully funded NCAA programs have 18 scholarships to divide across a roster that generally includes about twice that number.)

For Majors, the process started in earnest on July 1 when coaches can officially begin calling recruits on the phone. When the deluge of calls from suitors began, she was prepared.

“I wanted to talk on the phone, get to know you,” Majors said. “It wasn’t just like five schools contacting me. It was a whole lot, so I had to know what I was looking for.”

Majors came up with her list of 10 questions about the programs and then added a few more at the behest of her mother. She said she earned a reputation for her thoroughness.

“Whenever I went on my visits, everybody’s like ‘Hey, it’s question girl!’” Majors said with a laugh. “I was like, ‘Yeah, I’m question girl.'”

After making her five visits last fall, Majors honed in on the Volunteers as the front-runner, impressed by the chance to work with assistant Sharon Couch-Fikes, a two-time Olympian who was famously versatile in sprints, hurdles and jumps.

Still, the senior had to wait to make her pick until she was sure the Southeastern Conference School had a full scholarship available for her. With so many other full rides on the table, she couldn’t justify heading to Knoxville on a partial deal.

When that offer came, she committed to Tennessee in December. McNamara All-Met Brielyn Rogers, a friend who competed on the same club team over the summer, will also run for the Volunteers.

“When [Couch-Fikes] finally said, ‘We’re going to offer you a full ride,’ I was like ‘Okay. Well, that’s all I need to hear,’ Majors said. “That was the day I told her I was picking them.”

Majors will head to college with some decisions to make. She has not yet picked her major or figured out what events she’d like to compete in.

At Tennessee, Majors could choose the all-encompassing pentathlon (indoors) and heptathlon (outdoors), which would require her to add shot put, javelin and hurdles to her repertoire. She did the pentathlon for the first time at New Balance Indoor Nationals and finished third out of 12 athletes behind two experienced entrants.

“I’m going in undecided,” Majors said. “They don’t know what to do with me yet. I’m pretty sure I’ll still long jump, and I’m pretty sure I’ll still be running the [400] and hopefully everything in between.”

NUMBER CRUNCH: 52

The number of goals scored by All-Met midfielder Caroline Peters this spring after notching six more in Good Counsel’s 14-4 girls’ lacrosse win over Holy Cross on Wednesday. The Falcons improved to 6-0 in Washington Catholic Athletic Conference play this season, bouncing back after the Tartans stopped their 90-game conference winning streak in last year’s WCAC tournament final.

PHOTOS OF THE DAY:

BREAKFAST LINKS:

— Paul VI All-Met basketball player Ariana Freeman gave an oral commitment to Louisville on Wednesday, saying Coach Jeff Walz’s persistence on the recruiting trail sealed the deal for the Cardinals.

— In girls’ soccer action, Stone Bridge senior Emily Person scored her first goal since surgery to repair a torn ACL as the top-ranked Bulldogs downed No. 6 Briar Woods, 3-0, in a battle of Ashburn teams from different districts.

— Churchill junior Matt Gloger had never played a full varsity lacrosse game in net before delivering a 16-save performance in Wednesday’s 12-11 win over rival Wootton.

— Florida linebacker Jelani Jenkins, the 2008 All-Met Defensive Player of the Year at Good Counsel, doesn’t care where he gets picked in the NFL Draft but tells Brandon Parker, “I have always been a Redskins fan.”

— Brothers Terell and Eryk Williamson have paced a strong start for T.C. Williams on the soccer field.

— The Potomac Falls baseball team has won 11 straight games with a group of players that are “all about business.”

— The Bishop Ireton girls’ lacrosse team is loaded with young talent, including sophomores Charlotte Sofield and Isabel Obregon, who are already orally committed to North Carolina.

WHAT TO WATCH TODAY:

Boys’ soccer: Falls Church at Hayfield, 7 p.m.

If you’re not headed up to Philadelphia for the Penn Relays, check out this matchup between the top two teams in the AAA National standings. The Hawks remain unbeaten at 9-0 and have outscored their opponents 22-6 this season. The Jaguars draw their offensive firepower from junior Carlos Gutierrez and sophomore Henry Palencia, who have scored five goals apiece this season.

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