Higgs closes out BHS career with Champs win
EDITOR’S NOTE: In this time of COVID-19, with no sports action, BryantDaily.com will be posting past stories of Bryant athletics either posted on BryantDaily.com (from 2009 to the present) or published in the Bryant Times (from 1998 to 2008).
HOT SPRINGS — Brooke Higgs ended her Bryant High School running career in fitting fashion on Wednesday, May 25, at Hot Springs High School.
And she won in spectacular fashion, leading from start to finish, breaking her own school record (again), posting a personal best and, as it turned out, running the third best female 800 meters ever run in the history of Arkansas high school track.
Talk about going out in style. Higgs, who a week before was the best 800 meter runner in Class AAAAA, paced the field at the Meet of Champs, running a 2:14.5 to remain unbeaten in the event for the entire 2005 season.
The performance highlighted a strong showing by the group of Lady Hornets that competed at the meet. And it came with Higgs’ new head coach, the University of Arkansas’ Lance Harter, looking on.
“I was feeling a lot of pressure before the race,” Higgs allowed. “Coach Harter was here and also I wanted to try and keep my undefeated streak alive. When I heard my time at the finish, I could not believe it. My goal all year was to break 2:15 and I finally did it.”
“Brooke has had an awesome high school career and we will miss her tremendously but we wish her well as she moves to the next level with the Lady Razorbacks,” said Bryant coach Danny Westbrook. “Coach Harter left the stadium with a smile on his face.”
Junior Mary Edwards ran stride for stride with Higgs for most of the race and finished with her own personal best, a 2:16.8, good for third.
Bryant junior Kelsey Mitchell narrowly missed winning the 100 at the Meet of Champs when she clipped the last hurdle. Her 14.6 clocking was good for second and bested her own school record, set the week before at the Class AAAAA meet. In the 300, her 47.7 was good for fifth.
The Bryant quartet of Samantha Montgomery, Edwards, Mitchell and Higgs combined on a season-best 4:09.9 to take third in the 1600 meter relay to wrap up the day.
The highly anticipated duel between Bentonville and Bryant in the 3200 meter relay did not materialize. The Lady Hornets had to scratch when team member Jessica Sowell injured her foot. Bentonville went on to win the race in a meet-record time of 9:39.7.
“I was really proud of all our competitors tonight,” Westbrook said. “The Meet of Champions is just what the name implies. It is a meet of the best of the best and the Lady Hornets definitely represented our school and community proudly.”