Hornets capture 7A-Central Conference track and field championship

For more photos from this event by Kevin Nagle, go here

Behind first-place finishes from Brandon Murray, Chris Barrientos, John Carder and the 4×400-meter relay team of Josh Robinson, Malik Dockery, Diante Woodson and Landon Abernathy, the Bryant Hornets captured the 2017 7A-Central Conference track and field championship at Bryant Stadium on Thursday.

The Hornets compiled 180 points to beat out Conway (138), Cabot (101.5), North Little Rock (72), Fort Smith Southside (64.5), North Little Rock (37), Fort Smith Northside (36) and Little Rock Catholic (26).

In all, Bryant athletes qualified for the Class 7A State meet in all 17 events. The State meet is scheduled for Thursday, May 4, at Springdale Har-Ber High School.

“I’m really excited for these young men,” said Bryant head coach Steve Oury. “They’ve worked very hard all season and it paid off. We exceeded my expectations throughout the season, including in this meet. We had so many guys who stepped up in events where we might not have expected to score many points. We were able to score in every event and did well in all phases of the meet.

“This was a true team championship,” he emphasized, “and it couldn’t have happened without the great coaches we have in our track program. Brad Stroud, John Orr, Keith Dale, and Steve Griffith all help with various phases in the boys program and they have done a tremendous job.”

Murray, while scoring in all three jumping events, won the triple jump, covering 42’8.5”. Barrientos won the 1600 in a time of 4:30.85. Behind second-place Eli Johnson of Catholic (4:33.33), there were Carder at 4:37.06 and Christian McIntosh in 4:40.69 as the Hornets took three of the top four spots.

Carder won the 3200 with a time of 9:53.01 with Barrientos second in 9:57.96 and Kaine Villarreal-Hurst fourth in 10:21.22.

The 4×400 relay team turned in a 3:25.49 to beat out North Little Rock at 3:31.26.

“I thought Brandon Murray set the tone for the day when he won the triple jump,” Oury said. “We had a strong day in the field events, which set us up well for the running events. Madre Dixon did a great job in both of the throwing events.”

Dixon was second in the shot put with a toss of 48’6”. Hunter Moreton of Southside won at 51’0.5”. Bryant’s Michael Chatmon was eighth at 42’1.5”. In the discus, Dixon was fourth at 126’8” and Chatmon was eighth at 115’4”.

“We knew we had the potential to score big points in the distance events and the distance crew came through,” Oury noted. “Chris Barrientos and John Carder delivered in the 1600 and 3200.  Christian McIntosh scored nice points in both the 1600 and 800. Kaine Villarreal-Hurst scored in both the pole vault and the 3200 meter run, which is something you don’t see every day.”

Villarreal-Hurst cleared 12 feet in the pole vault to finish sixth.

In the 800, Enrique Ramos was third for the Hornets with a time of 2:04.22. McIntosh was fifth in 2:04.98 with Hunter Ulmer sixth (2:05.00) and Joshua Nelson seventh (2:06.18).

“It was also great to finish the meet with a big victory in the 4×400,” Oury related. “That was the icing on the cake.”

The Hornets were second in the two other relays. In the 4×800, Ulmer, Nelson, Logan Kretsch and Ramos turned in an 8:26.80, second only to Conway’s 8:17.92. In the 4×100, Mackenzie Martindale, Andre White, Diante Woodson and Murray ran a 43.34 finishing just off the pace of North Little Rock (43.33).

Martindale also scored in the 400, the 200 and the 100. In the 400, he was second in 51.25 to Cabot’s Brandon Whitley (51.02) with Woodson third in 51.25 and Glenn Norris eighth in 53.15. In the 100, Martindale’s 11.49 was good for third with Randy Thomas sixth in 11.63. Martindale’s 22.84 in the 200 garnered fourth-place points with White fifth (23.04) and Thomas sixth (23.35).

Landon Abernathy finished third in both hurdles events. He ran a 15.83 in the 110 high hurdles and a 40.52 in the 300 intermediate hurdles. Raney Singleton’s 42.46 in the 300 was good for fourth.

Robinson picked up third-place points in the high jump, clearing 6’0” with Murray sixth at 5’10”. In the long jump, Murray was fourth with a leap of 20’7.25”.

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