BRONXVILLE, N.Y. – Bronxville High School junior Mary Cain was named USA Track & Field’s Athlete of the Week on Thursday after running the fastest 3,000-meter time ever run by a high school girl.
Cain, a multiple New York State cross country, indoor and outdoor middle-distance champion since she began her running career five years ago, ran a time of 9:02.10 to win the Dempsey Indoor meet, held Saturday at the University of Washington. The 16-year-old also qualified for the 2012 Olympic Trials and competed in the Junior World Championships last summer.
“It definitely is very exciting running against professionals now,” Cain said in a news release by the USTA. “Many of the runners in my races have amazing resumes and a lot of experience, so I just remind myself that every race is just a learning experience.”
Cain ran the race 15 seconds faster than the indoor high school record of 9:17.7, set in 1991 by Melody Fairchild. She also eclipsed the fastest-ever girls' outdoor time of 9:08.6 by Lynn Bjorklund in 1975. Cain’s run on Saturday came on an oversized 307-meter track, which may prevent it from being officially ratified for record purposes.
“I was really excited to see the time 9:02.10,” Cain said. “Being able to achieve a big PR was really exciting. I went into the race just wanting to run smart and gain experience, but the time really was the cherry on top.”