Nixa's Courtney Frerichs qualifies for Tokyo Olympics in steeplechase

Wyatt D. Wheeler
Springfield News-Leader

Courtney Frerichs will represent Team USA in the Olympics for the second time in her career. 

The 2011 graduate of Nixa High is bound for Tokyo after qualifying in the 3,000-meter steeplechase after finishing second with a time of 9:11.79 in Thursday night's qualifying final on Thursday night in Eugene, Oregon.

"I'm so excited," Frerichs told NBC Sports after the race. "To make one Olympic team is amazing; to make two is an absolute dream come true."

The top three finishers advance to the Tokyo Olympics. Emma Coburn won the qualifying final race with a time of 9:09.41 with Val Constien finishing third with a time of 9:18.34.

Frerichs qualified for the 2016 games in Rio where she finished 11th. 

Since then, Frerichs broke and currently owns the American women's steeplechase record with a run of 9:00.85 during a 2018 run in Monaco. She also won the silver medal a the 2017 World Championships.

Frerichs qualified for Thursday night's run with her third-place finish in a qualifying round on Sunday night. She got tripped up on the second lap of the race but still managed to fight her way back and finish with an Olympic standard time of 9:27.75.

Wyatt D. Wheeler is a reporter and columnist with the Springfield News-Leader. You can contact him at 417-371-6987, by email at wwheeler@news-leader.com or Twitter at @WyattWheeler_NL. He's also the co-host of Sports Talk on Jock Radio weekdays from 4-6 p.m.