Murillo’s throws, makeshift relay shine for star-crossed Hornets at State meet

Photos courtesy of Julie Shelby

5.6Duo2CONWAY — Dany Murillo finished third in the shot put and fourth in the discus, and the Bryant Hornets’ 4×400 relay team, despite the loss of senior Pierce Finney, turned in a fourth-place finish to highlight the Class 7A State championship meet for the Hornets at Conway High School on Thursday.

The Hornets finished eighth as a team in the 15-team competition with 26 points. Fayetteville won the title with 132.5 points with Springdale Har-Ber second with 115. Cabot was third with 87, followed by Conway (74) and Bentonville (68.5). Rogers was sixth (43.5) and Rogers Heritage seventh (27.5).

The loss of Finney, who had qualified in three individual events was a blow to the Hornets. Head coach Steve Oury said Finney injured a hamstring during the prelims for the 200-meter dash.

“That was tough to overcome,” the coach acknowledged. “I really hate it for Pierce. He was in the best shape of his career and had a chance to score in several events. We had to compete without one of our senior leaders but I thought we handled it well. The boys fought hard and had some nice performances.”

Murillo’s third-place toss in the shot went 47’2” and earned him all-State honors. Fayetteville had throwers that placed first, second and fifth, led by Blake Young with a heave of 52’11.5”.5.6Solo

In the discus, Murillo’s throw went 138’11”, which was fourth behind Young’s 161’.

“Dany had a great day in the throws, scoring 11 big points,” Oury said. “He placed higher than he was seeded in both throwing events. Coach John Orr did a great job with Dany and the rest of our throwers.”

The Hornets’ 4×400 relay was not only without Finney but also Landon Abernathy who was ill. Still, Malik Dockery Diante Woodson, Andre White and Matthew Bagby still put together a 3:29.47 to take fourth behind Har-Ber (3:22.40), Bentonville (3:24.90) and Cabot (3:27.99).

“I thought Malik Dockery and Andre White did a very good job of stepping up,” mentioned Oury.

Before getting sick, Abernathy gutted out a 40.91 in the 300-meter hurdles to earn a sixth-place finish.

In the 3200, John Carder was sixth and Chris Barrientos was seventh. Carter finished in 10:01.89. Barrientos finished in 10:03.90.

Bagby added an eighth-place finish in the 400 at 51.77. The 4×100 relay team of Woodson, White, Bagby and Thomas was eighth as well in 44.56.

“Landon did a nice job in the 300 hurdles,” Oury said, “and I thought that John and Chris both ran great races in the 3200. John set a new personal record time by 13 seconds and Chris was 6 seconds better than his previous best.”

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