Conway edges Bryant for top honors at Benton meet
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Photos courtesy of Jamie Hester and Julie Combs
The Conway Lady Wampus Cats won six events and the Bryant Lady Hornets won three as the two teams battled for top honors at the Benton Invitational swim meet at the Bishop Park Aquatic Center on Tuesday. All else being pretty equal, the Lady Wampus Cats paced the 14-team field with 409 points, edging the Lady Hornets who accumulated 394.
El Dorado was a distant third with 195 followed by Magnolia (132), Hot Springs Lakeside (131.5), Arkadelphia (114.5), Lake Hamilton (103), Vilonia (100), Benton (83), Little Rock Christian (53), Little Rock Parkview (38), Lonoke (33), Hot Springs (25) and Carlisle (5).
The Lady Hornets were led by Lindsey Butler’s wins in the 50-yard freestyle (25.73) and the 100-yard back stroke (1:03.03). She also contributed a leg to the winning effort on the 400-yard relay, joining Katie Higgs, Kalee Jackson and Ploy Freebairn on a 4:07.22.
Conway won the other two relays along with the 100 individual medley, the 100 butterfly, the 500 free and the 100 breast stroke.
The only events that weren’t won by either Bryant or Conway was Xiao Toone of Parkview in the one-meter dive; Hope Ernhart of Benton in the 200 free; and Karlee Thurmon of El Dorado in the 100 free.
Bryant made up distance on Conway by having multiple scorers in every individual event except the diving competition in which Allison Mundy finished third.
In addition, the Lady Hornets’ quartet of Butler, Libby Thompson, Higgs and Freebairn finished second to Conway in the 200 medley relay (2:01.41). The team of Thompson, Reagan Smith, Jacey Bittle and Jackson combined on a 1:56.06 to finish fourth in the 200 free relay.
Bryant had four swimmers score in two events. In the 200 free, Rachel Vos was third in 2:15.13 followed by Jackson in fourth with a time of 2:16.55. Bittle was sixth in 2:24.13 and Lauren Wood 16th in 2:49.88.
In the 500 free, Freebairn led Bryant’s scoring foursome, taking third in 5:55.44. Vos was fourth in 5:59.17 followed by Jamie Hammers (eighth, 7:03.44) and Devin Hester (ninth, 7:04.28).
Jackson was second in the 100 free, turning in a 1:01.47 with Smith 13th (1:09.44) and Julianna Shelton 15th (1:10.23).
Higgs was third and Freebairn fourth in the 200 individual medley with Hester taking 10th. Higgs clocked in at 2:30.19, Freenbairn at 2:31.40, and Hester at 2:58.34.
Higgs led a pack of three Lady Hornets in the 100 butterfly, finishing fourth in 1:08.82. Tiffany Robinson was sixth in 1:25.59 and Deidra Reeves eighth in 2:15.59.
Bittle, Thompson and Hammers each contributed points in the 100 breast stroke. Taking fifth, Bittle turned in a 1:21.65. Thompson was sixth in 1:22.25 with Hammers 13th in 1:30.53.
In addition, Wood followed Butler in the 100 back, earning 15th-place points in 1:25.05. Thompson and Smith added points behind Butler in the 50 free. Thompson was 13th in 29.41 and Smith 16th in 30.44
The Lady Hornets are scheduled to compete at UALR on Saturday in their regular-season finale. They’ll host the South District Meet at Bishop Park on Feb. 14.