Nixa native Courtney Frerichs breaks personal record, finishes steeplechase in under nine minutes at Prefontaine Classic

Courtney Frerichs, of the United States, celebrates after winning the silver medal in the...
Courtney Frerichs, of the United States, celebrates after winning the silver medal in the women's 3,000-meter steeplechase final at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Wednesday, Aug. 4, 2021, in Tokyo. (AP Photo/Petr David Josek)(Petr David Josek | AP)
Published: Aug. 21, 2021 at 5:25 PM CDT
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EUGENE, Ore. (KY3) - Weeks after earning a silver medal in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, Nixa native Courtney Frerichs reached another major milestone Saturday.

Frerichs became the first American woman to break the nine-minute barrier in the Prefontaine Classic. She finished as the runner-up in the race with a time of 8:57.77 to break her own American record.

Frerichs previously set the record in the women’s 3,000-meter steeplechase with a time of 9:00.85 back in 2018.

The milestone comes 17 days after Frerichs finished as the silver medalist in the 3,000-meter steeplechase at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics with a time of 9:04.45.

In that race, Frerichs ran with the front pack early in the race before taking the lead with four laps remaining. She maintained her lead with three laps to go and was first across the line for the bell lap when Uganda’s Peruth Chemutai made her move to take the lead and claim the gold medal.

A 2011 graduate of Nixa High School, Frerichs competed in the Summer Olympics for the second time in five years. During her last Olympics bid five years ago, Courtney was coming off an NCAA National Title in the steeplechase. She made the U.S. Olympic team, then finished 11th in the competition.

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