Bryant girls pace 18-team field in landmark effort
EDITOR’S NOTE: Because the look back at each day in Bryant athletic history has been so favorably received during the time when there was no sports during the COVID-19 shutdown, BryantDaily.com will continueposting past stories of Bryant athletics either posted on BryantDaily.com (from 2009 to the present) or published in the Bryant Times (from 1998 to 2008).
Photos courtesy of Jamie Hester, Julia Combs and Marianne Shelton
In a crowded 18-team swimming and diving meet at the Bishop Park Aquatic Center on Thursday, the Bryant Lady Hornets accomplished something no previous edition of the Bryant squad had accomplished, according to Coach Angel Dale.
“The Lady Hornets beat Conway for the first time in the history of our program,” Dale declared. “That is really big for us.
“I am very proud of the girls,” she added. “They continue to rise to the occasion and dominate the competition.”
Despite the size of the field, the Lady Hornets produced multiple scoring efforts in seven of the nine individual events and won two of three relays to amass 333.5 points. Conway was second with 314 with El Dorado a distant third at 175.5. Hot Springs Lakeside (161) and Rogers Heritage (145.5) rounded out the top five.
Bryant won the 200-yard medley relay in a time of 2:01.00 as Lindsey Butler, Libby Thompson, Katie Higgs and Ploy Freebairn combined. The same group (in a different order) captured top honors in the 200 free relay as well.
Individually, Butler and Freebairn earned first-place points. Butler captured the 100 backstroke, her specialty, with a time of 1:03.22. Freebairn captured the 500 freestyle with a time ofe 5:45.75.
As in most of the other individual events, the Lady Hornets had swimmers scoring behind that winning duo in each race. In the backstroke, it was Jacey Bittle (15th in 1:18.47) and Julianna Shelton (16th, 1:23.59). In the 500, it was Rachel Vos (fifth in 6:12.58) and Devin Hester (14th, 7:15.78).
Butler added a second-place finish in the 50 free with a time of 25.30. Jordan Tarvin was 16th in 30.12.
Vos turned in a 2:16.81 win the 200 free, taking third, just ahead of teammate Kalee Jackson who was fourth in 2:18.01. Hester tied for 16th to add to the scoring. Her time was 2:36.34.
Fourth-place finishes were turned in by Allison Mundy in the one-meter dive, Higgs in the 200 individual medley (2:29.03) and the 100 butterfly (1:07.79) along with Bittle in the 100 breast stroke (1:20.59).
In addition, Bittle, Vos, Reagan Smith and Jackson combined on a 4:22.63 to finish the 400 free relay in fourth place.
Behind Higgs in the 200 IM was Freebairn (sixth in 2:33.61) and Jamie Hammers (13th in 2:33.61) along with Smith (14th, 2:59.10). Higgs also paced a Bryant contingent that included Tiffany Robinson (10th, 1:23.16) and Shawn Peairson (15th, 1:38.29) in the 100 fly.
Along with Bittle, Thompson scored in the 100 breast, turning in a 1:22.79 to place seventh. Jackson collected sixth-place points in the 100 freestyle, clocking in at 1:01.74.
Bryant is set to host another meet in its next outing, set for Tuesday, Jan. 28.