It was steady. It was methodical. It was everything she wanted to do. As Kellenberg's Jazmine Fray moved up along the final straight of the 400 meters, it was as if everything else was in slow motion. Inch by inch, she made her way up to the front, finally winning in 57.38 seconds.
"During the first 200, I was a little tired from my 1,500 [earlier in the day]," Fray said. "I just tried to go as fast as I could for that final 200. Normally, I'm used to the field slowing down a little bit after the start, but they didn't slow down at all. I knew that I had to slowly pick people off and that the last straightaway would be the toughest."
The time helped the Kellenberg girls win the NSCHSAA title, scoring 105.5 points at Saturday's championship meet at St. Anthony's.
Fray won the 1,500 in 4:37.85. The time broke the Kellenberg school record of 4:38, set by Kim Mackay in 2010, according to coach Marty Brown.
"I was a little nervous, so I wanted to make sure I conserved my energy and didn't go out in a ridiculous time," Fray said. "I tried to stay behind Holy Trinity's Caroline Brown. With two laps to go, the pace slowed down a little. I knew that I would have enough energy on the last lap, so I could just go. I made sure the final 200 was fast."
Fray hardly won the team title by herself. The Firebirds took the top three places in the 100 hurdles. Melany Belot won in 15.04 seconds. Dorie Ervilus placed second in 15.24. Mary Camarano finished third in 15.52.
Holy Trinity high jumper Alexis Harrs also set a school record during the championship. Her 5-foot, 3-inch leap broke Krista Fazio's record of 5-2 set in 2006, according to coach Justin Renna.
"I've wanted to clear 5-3 since freshman year," Harrs said. "I'm a senior now and I finally cleared it. I'm really excited. I'm also the league champ. I couldn't have asked for anything better."