Lady Hornets persevere through adversity at Russellville

RUSSELLVILLE — On a hot, humid Saturday morning, the Bryant Lady Hornets cross country teams competed at the Cyclone Invitational meet in Russellville with the varsity girls finished 12th in a packed field of 27 teams.

In junior varsity competition, Bryant showed its depth by finishing second and, in the junior girls’ race, the Lady Hornets were fourth.

Bailey Brazil led the varsity squad with a season-best time of 22:18. Olivia Orr (23.11), Maggie Laws (23:37), Kayla Scott (24:48) and Zhania Hall (26:23) completed the top five.

Sarah Rogers turned in a season-best time of 25:03 to finished ninth for the JV girls. Mika Johnson was 11th in 25:10 followed by Natasha Hobby (24th, 26:55), Litzy Zavala (27th, 28:28) and Darcie Dunbar (28th, 28:32).

“I was pleased with our performance today,” said Bryant coach Keith Dale. “We have been dealing with some illnesses, injuries and, now, the heat again. But the teams always put their best foot forward.”

For the junior girls, Kim Hernandez led with an eighth-place finish in 14:04 followed by Margo Gilliland (17th, 14:36), Abigail Lagemann (28th, 14:49), McKenzie Hicks (34th, 15:00), and Marissa Tate (38th, 15:10).

“Our middle school coaches, Denise Smith and Deanne Porter, and ninth grade coach, Lisa Dreher, have done an outstanding job in getting these girls ready to compete,” Dale said. “Much like the senior high team, the junior girls team has been plaqued with illness and injuries. But the underclassmen are there to step up to the challenge by giving it all they have.”

The Lady Hornets travel to Fayetteville for the annual Chile Pepper Festival.

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