Lady Hornets run away with Bryant Invitational championship

Photos by Vicki Westbrook and Kevin Nagle

The phenomenal Alexis Royal scored 43 points, winning her 11th career invitational meet high-point[more] award and the Bryant Lady Hornet track team dominated the competition at the annual Hornet Invitational at Bryant Stadium Thursday night.

Bryant senior Alexis Royal received the high-point award from Bryant athletic director Mike Lee. (Photo by Vicki Westbrook)

The Lady Hornets finished a whopping 62 points ahead of second-place Cabot in the field of 23 teams. Camden Fairview finished third with 74 points followed by North Little Rock (52), Jonesboro (48), Rogers Heritage (40), LR Central (35), and Lake Hamilton (33).

Royal’s night included first place performances in five events — including a pair of school-record efforts — plus a runner-up finish in a sixth event. In the 300-meter hurdles, she ran away from the field with a school record time of 45.8. She also took first place in the triple jump (35’11”) and the long jump (17’6”). She finished second in the 100-meter hurdles in 15.7 then capped off her night by running the anchor leg of the school record setting 4 x 100-meter relay and contributing to the winning 4 x 400-meter relay.

Senior Hannah Raney (Photo by Kevin Nagle)

Joining in the record-breaking relay were Melinda Murdock, Fenice Boone and Gabby Allen. The quartet finished in 49.6.

In the 4 x 400, it was Royal, Boone, Murdock and Leah Ward clocking in at 4:05.7.

“Alexis had an amazing night,” acknowledged Lady Hornets coach Danny Westbrook. “She is finally getting healthy again and is starting to look like she did before the injury she suffered last spring. This is her 11th high school high point performance and that is just an incredible feat.”

Boone, a sophomore, contributed 23 points for the Lady Hornets taking first place in the 400-meter dash (58.3) and second place in the 100-meter dash (12.5).

Murdock, a junior, added 21 points. She took first in the 800-meter run (2:26) and third in the 100-meter hurdles (16.0).

Senior Hannah Raney scored 15 points for the Lady Hornets in the distance events. She took second in the 3200-meter run (11:59) and fourth in the 1600-meter run (5:35). She was also a member of the distance medley relay team that took second place, joining Alexis Broderick, Sam Macchi and Talyn Billins producing a time of 13:32.

The Lady Hornets picked up third-place points from Jayla Anderson in the 300 hurdles (47.9); Ward in the 200 (26.8) and Jenna Freeman in the discus (94’5”).

Talyn Billins turns the corner in the distance medley relay Thursday. (Photo by Kevin Nagle)

Macchi was fifth in the 800 with a time of 2:31. Ward added an eighth-place finish in the long jump (15’7”) as did Caitlyn Bell in the 3200 (12:37) and Myah Thompson in the discus (83’9”).

“The overall team performance we had tonight is one of the best I have ever been a part of,” Westbrook declared. “To dominate like we did in such a loaded field of teams just goes to show you the talent and tenacity we have here. These girls are talented and they work hard. That hard work paid off big time tonight.

“I would like to credit Coach Keith Dale (sprints), Coach Beth Solomon (jumps) and Coach John Orr (throws) for their huge contributions to our success,” he concluded.

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