Alexa Efraimson surprised even herself Saturday.
Efraimson, a Camas High School sophomore, finished first among a field of collegiate and post-collegiate runners in the women’s 1,500 meters at the Oregon Preview meet at Hayward Field in Eugene.
More impressive: She finished in 4 minutes, 19.54 seconds.
“At the time it is in the season right now, I wanted to hit a 4:24,” Efraimson said. “I was like, ‘Oh my gosh!’ I was just sort of surprised.”
Washington athletes compete at 1,600 meters during the high school season, so Efraimson has had few opportunities to run the 1,500 — known as the Metric Mile.
But here’s an item for comparison’s sake: Oregon high schools run the 1,500 meters rather than the 1,600, and the winning time at last year’s state meet was 4:31.99 — more than 12 seconds behind what Efraimson ran Saturday.
“I went out there just wanting to try and run fast,” Efraimson said. “The rabbit went out really fast.
“A lot of it was staying patient and calm until about 250 meters were left, then I started my kick.”
Efraimson said she moved from fifth place and quickly took the lead. She finished more than two seconds ahead of runner-up Laura Carlyle of the Bowerman Athletic Club, who ran a 4:21.83.
Carlyle is the Oregon State University record-holder in the 1,500.
While Efraimson’s season is off to a fast start, she sees plenty of room for improvement.”I wasn’t really sure how I was going to roll out going into the race,” she said. “The season to me is little steps at a time and little progressions.”
Stars of the day
• Baseball: Seaver Whalen and Ethan Bniga were each 3 for 5 with a combined five RBI in Union’s 13-9 win over Hockinson.
• Track and field: Ridgefield’s Alex Olson won the discus at the Rainier Icebreaker Invitational with a throw of 146 feet, 9 inches.