Photos courtesy of Scott Dettmer
LITTLE ROCK — The Bryant Hornets opened their 2016 cross country season at Western Hills Park where the Minuteman Invitational was held Saturday. John Carder’s runner-up finish led the Hornets to a fifth place finish out of 23 teams. A total of 34 schools had runner in the race, with 267 total finishers. Carder ran a time of 16:38, which was six seconds behind Colby Swecker of Lake Hamilton.
The Hornets posted a team score of 136, to finish behind Lake Hamilton (96), Maumelle (97), Cabot (100), and Catholic (133).
Chris Barrientos also placed in the top 10 for the Hornets, earning a seventh place finish in a time of 17:26. The rest of the Hornets top seven were Eathan Devine (25th in 18:18), Kaine Villareal-Hurst (52nd in 19:23), Chris Morgan (58th in 19:28), Decatur Austin (62nd in 19:32), and Colby Harvey (64th in 19:34).
“It was nice to get a meet under our belt,” said Bryant head coach Steve Oury. “Some of the boys struggled with the heat a little bit but, overall, I though we did a pretty good job.
“John Carder ran a great race to earn the runner-up spot,” he added. “Chris Barrientos struggled a little bit but to finish in the top 10 even on an off day should be pretty encouraging for him. Eathan Devine really ran well, so now we just need to keep working on closing the gaps within our top runners.”
Dylan White was the top Bryant finisher, placing 18th in a time of 11:56, followed closely by Bresner Austin, who placed 19th in a time of 11:57.
Rounding out the Junior Hornets’ top seven were Christian Brack (23rd in 12:01), Hagan Austin (31st in 12:17), C.J. Travis (32nd in 12:19), Chris Herrera (40th in 12;28), and Ethan Saffle (58th in 12:47).
“The junior boys did a good job,” Oury said. “I was really curious to see how they would look because, at the junior high level, you never know from year to year how you are going to stack up. Conway has a really good group this year, so we will work on trying to close the gap on them as the year progresses.
He added, “Coach Deanna Porter at Bryant Middle School and Coach Denise Smith at Bethel Middle School are doing a great job with their athletes. We had several middle school runners in scoring positions. Also, Coach Lisa Dreher has been a welcome addition to the staff this year and she has worked hard with our ninth graders. Coach (Keith) Dale and I are very lucky to have such good coaches to work with.”