North Carolina has a strong tradition of sending athletes onto Footlocker Nationals . . . the question is, who will it be this year? Also, can any NC athletes qualify for the NXN National in Portland? Laura Hoer looks to be one of the top athletes in the race.
Photo: Could Wesley Frazier of Ravenscroft dip under 17:00? She has run 17:05 and 17:10 this year. She has also broken the course record 3 times at Hagan Stone Park. She is ranked among the top-10 nationally and should qualify with ease, if she is still holding form. Wesley is young and has been racing hard since early September. Let's hope she is peaking at the right time.
Photo: Carolyn Baskir of East Chapel Hill is ranked in the nation's top-20. She has a 17:12 PR this season and won the huge Maymount Invitational in VA.
Photo: Laura Hoer of TC Roberson may flat out win the NXN Regional in Cary. She is the 4A State champ, upsetting Carolyn Baskir. Look for her to move onto Portland as an individual.
Photo: Possibly NC's best hope at the Footlocker South meet for boys, Jake Hurysz of Eastern Alamance, wins here at the 3A NCHSAA state meet. Jake has a 15:12 PR this season and dropped a 9:08 by himself at the Regan 3200m time trial.
Photo: Cary's Mohammed Abushouk may be running well at the right time. He looked to be NC's #1 coming into the season, but never quite showed his 15:10 track talent. He's been good but not sub-15:00 caliber. He ran 9:17 for a tune-up last week.
Photo: Northern Durham's Blake Williams already ran 15:18 at McAlpine. Another 10-15 seconds could assure him of a spot to San Diego. A 9:21 3200m time trial says he could be ready.
Photo: East Forsyth's Patrick Crawford won the 4A NCHSAA state title and then ran a 9:27 time trial. Is he ready for 15:10?
Photo: Thomas Graham of Cary Academy ran 15:15 earlier this year. He was the top 9th grader in the region last year in 15:37.
Photo: Isaac Presson of Asheville could be a huge sleeper. Coming off a huge PR of 9:14 for 3200m. Isaac definitely possesses the speed and raw talent to drop a nasty time on the fast McAlpine course. Reminds me of Eric Mack from a handful of years ago.