Lady Hornets 2nd by just 1 point
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LITTLE ROCK — Though they ran as a pack, the Bryant Lady Hornets top three just weren’t as close to the front as they needed to be to take team honors at the UALR Invitational cross country meet at Rebsaman Golf Course on Saturday, Sept. 22.
And it wouldn’t have taken a major move up since they finished second to Russellville by just one point.
The Junior Lady Hornets, meanwhile, put four runners in the top 20 to finish third in their division.
“Losing by one point in cross country is really tough, because it means that you could have won if just one of your top five runners would have finished just one place better,” acknowledged Lady Hornets head coach Danny Westbrook. “That’s why it is so important to race all the way through the finish.
“I thought we had won, but Russellville just beat us up front, which is what has been happening to us every meet,” he added.
It was the third meet in a row this season the Lady Hornets have finished second, this time with 77 points to Russellville’s 76. Mount St. Mary’s finished third with 96 points.
The Lady Hornets were paced by the top 10 finish of Lennon Bates. Her 22:07 clocking was good for ninth. Sara Coker was 12th in 22:31 and Nicole Darland 13th in 22:32. Sam Wirzfeld (21st, 23:33) and Lola Fleming (24th, 23:41) completed the scoring quintet.
“Lennon ran a great race and really came on strong at the finish,” Westbrook mentioned. “I
thought Lola Fleming had a breakthrough race today and Jessica Shepard has been working hard and it paid off with a great race today.”
Stacie Waite paced the Junior Lady Hornets, finishing 12th in 12:21. Callie Smith was close behind as Bryant’s second runner with a time of 12:35, good for 14th. Stephanie Cyz finished 16th in 12:40 and Lauren Reed 17th in 12:42. Kaitlyn Nichols completed the scoring group with a 25th place finish in 13:02.
“We have several junior girls that are starting to really come around and race well,” Westbrook commented. “I thought all the scoring five did an outstanding job. Also, Kari Henderson, Reese Moore, Amy McMahon, Mary Nance, and Bailey Freyaldenhoven had great performances.”
The teams were scheduled to run at Russellville on Saturday, Sept. 29, before traveling to Hot Springs for the Lake Hamilton Invitational on Oct. 6.