COLUMBUS — Fredericktown High School’s last chance to appear on the podium at state fell a bit short.
Emily Roberts finished ninth in the 3200-meter run at Saturday’s OHSAA State Track and Field Championships at Jesse Owens Stadium in Columbus.
Roberts’ time of 11:32.63 was seven seconds off the pace of Russia’s Lauren Francis (11:25.97), who finished eighth. Alexandra Markovic (11:04.53), from Gates Mills Hawken, took first place. Roberts’ regional rival, Shadyside’s Tara Tollett, finished second (11:06.63).
Roberts was emotional after the race and had few words.
“I focused a lot on easy workouts,” said Roberts. “(Now) I just have to get more fit, run a couple of 5K’s.”
It wasn’t Roberts’ best effort, but it wasn’t too far off her pace, either. The sophomore Freddie’s time was just seven seconds behind her qualifying time at regionals in Lexington (11:25.58). Both times were actually much better than her district time (11:46.27).
Roberts appeared to be her usual self in the first three laps, where she was part of a threesome leading the way. By the fourth lap, Roberts began fading. By the second mile, she was clearly struggling, and continuing to fall behind.
Last year, Roberts reached the podium by finishing sixth in the 1600-meter run. Ironically, Markovic finished fifth in that race, only a half-second ahead of Roberts.