Forest Park sophomore Stefanie Slekis hadn't planned on running the 1,600-meter race at the Virginia AAA outdoor track and field championships at Todd Stadium here on Saturday.
But Slekis eventually entered, and she's glad she did. She finished second in 5 minutes 2.76 seconds and followed that with a third-place run in the 3,200 (11:02.57) to complete a fine performance for the Bruins.
"I'm very happy with the races," Slekis said after the 3,200. "I was able to stay focused the whole time."
Slekis has one more meet to go in what has been a stellar sophomore season. She has qualified for the mile run in next week's Adidas Outdoor Championships in Raleigh, N.C. In the fall, she was a second-team All-Met for the Bruins' cross-country team, and she was all-state in the 3,200 during the indoor season.
Slekis gave some of the credit for her success to All-Met teammate Beth Fahey, who finished fourth in the 3,200. Fahey, a senior who will run for Arkansas next year, provides a model of what to do to improve, Slekis said.
"I see how disciplined she is," Slekis said. "She's taught me a lot about the amount of commitment you have to put in."
Slekis's runner-up effort in the 1,600 was one of three individual second-place finishes by Prince William County athletes at the state meet; no county athletes won an individual crown.
Potomac junior Kharya Brown, an All-Met this spring, ran her best time of the year (11.95) to finish second in the 100 meters behind Bethel's Francena McCorory. Brown was followed by junior teammates Fallon Hutcherson (third place) and Candace Robinson (fifth). Brown was also third in the 200.
In the team competition, Potomac was the top local finisher, taking fifth with 33 points.
Forest Park and Woodbridge tied for 11th with 22 points. Vikings junior Letosia Rivers finished second in the 300 hurdles, and sophomore teammate Ariene Jenkins captured third in the shot put.
Forest Park sophomore Monica Wright was sixth in the 400, and Osbourn Park senior Devon Alston was sixth in the 300 hurdles and seventh in the 100 hurdles.
Only five county boys earned all-state recognition, which is given to the top eight athletes in an individual event. Hylton senior Deon Butler was sixth in the 100 and fifth in the 200, and Gar-Field senior Terry Jackson took eighth in the 400 and seventh in the long jump.
Forest Park junior Bryce Iverson captured sixth in the 3,200, and sophomore teammate Cameron Perry was sixth in the long jump. Hylton senior Cornell Parker tied for eighth in the high jump.