It seems that the Bryant Lady Hornets track team is always among the best in the state in the 4×400-meter relay and, over the last two years, Zeia Robinson has been a part of the effort to keep that tradition going.
She’ll continue in the spring when track season comes around again, wrapping up her high school career. But she will now continue that career at the next level.
On Monday, Nov. 13, the daughter of Christopher and Tineka Robinson signed a national letter of intent to continue her track career and her education under scholarship at Harding University in Searcy.
“I never thought I could be this good,” Zeia Robinson declared. “I was really humble. I never thought I was the best runner or anything. I started out at the bottom, in the back of the group then I slowly worked myself up. It took a lot of training outside of school and before school and I’m just really thankful it paid off. I thank God for everything. I’m just extremely happy.”
Robinson has starred for the Lady Hornets in the 200 and the 400 individually.
“I’ve tried the 100 but that didn’t turn out too well,” she related. “But that’s where I learned my strengths and weaknesses.”
“She’s run a really good time in the 200,” noted Bryant coach Keith Dale. “Her p.r. (personal record) is 26.32, I believe. Her open (400) is not as good. It’s like 62 but she’s gone 60 consecutively with her split on the mile relay. With the mile relay, there’s a lot more tension, a lot more adrenaline, more excitement and that’s where she really steps up. Whenever it comes down to it. Whenever we need it, she’ll get it and she’ll get it there.”
Asked what Harding is getting, Dale said, “They’re getting a really hard worker. Zeia’s been on our all-state, all-conference track team for all four years and, of course, she’s been a big, big help in all areas. Anytime I need somebody to put into a relay, she’s there, she’s willing, she’s able. No matter what event, if we need someone there, she’s willing to take up the slack and get it done. I know I can turn to her and she’s willing to go.”
Robinson started running competitively in the seventh grade.
“We did AAU and USATF,” Robinson said. “So, it’s been a long journey.”
She took a visit to TCU but her academic goals, among other things, made Harding more attractive.
“I looked at the programs and saw Harding had an outstanding pharmacy program,” she explained. “That automatically made me want to take interest in them because it’s not about just track. It’s also about my academics. I had to take that into consideration.
“I went to visit TCU first then I went to visit Harding,” Robinson continued. “TCU was okay but it wasn’t as loving, I guess you could say. Or it wasn’t as family-based and that’s what I really wanted. At Harding, it was like, ‘Are you okay?’ They’re really concerned about you and I just loved that.
“After the visit, I was immediately sure that Harding was the best spot for me,” she acknowledged. “Other than pharmacy, I think it was the atmosphere. At Bryant, we’re all family. They all help you and support you. I just love that. So, finding that in a college as well was awesome.
“They’re also Christian-based and I wanted to go to a school that’s Christian-based, of course,” she noted. “That just sold me.”
“I wanted to be in the medical field but I didn’t want to operate on anyone and I didn’t want to deal with blood so this is the best spot for me,” she explained.
Robinson thanked her parents for pushing her and all her teammates.
“This team was really great,” she said later. “Together, we’ve had our ups and downs but we always learned how to work through them. In meets, we were always like, ‘Okay, we messed up here but this is our game plan for the next one.’ And we were always building each other up. We never tore each other down. And I just love that.”