Winter Springs junior Caroline Wells and her magical 2021 outdoor season continued on a day after running the second-fastest mile time in Florida high school history at the Brooks PR Invitational with a 4:42.40 fourth-place showing on Friday in Seattle, Washington.
After the post-race activities, Wells traveled the 5 plus hour drive by car down to Eugene, Oregon at the University of Oregon's Hayward Field for The Outdoor Nationals presented by Nike to race in the 5K.
The goal in the race was to break a 13-year-old state record held by former Florida high school distance running great Ashley Brasovan's winning time of 16:18.91 at the 2008 Nike Outdoor Nationals as well as compete for the win.
At the gun, Wells took charge setting the tone and pace with two runners from Massachusetts in Ellie Shea and Margot Appleton giving chase. She went thru the first 1600 meters in 5:06 and then proceeded to hit 3200 meters just over 10:20. Shea was able to stay in contact and then able to make the pass on Wells who consistently clocked most of her laps under 78 seconds with a few exceptions over the 12 and a half lap distance event.
The freshman Shea would pull away for the win in 16:10.42, while Wells on tired legs and plenty of travel fatigue held strong for the last two laps to finish with a new Florida high school state record performance of 16:16.02.
Wells now wraps up a historically successful 2021 outdoor season breaking state records in the 3200 and 5000-meter run, while moving up to second fastest all-time in the mile and well inside the top 10 for 1600 meters. She certainly would have likely broken the two-mile state record as well if given the chance.