Hornets claim team title at OBU meet
EDITOR’S NOTE: Because the look back at each day in Bryant athletic history has been so favorably received during the time when there was no sports during the COVID-19 shutdown, BryantDaily.com will continueposting 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).
ARKADELPHIA — Senior Ethan Blakley finished second only to rival Josh Brewer of Lake Hamilton but Blakley and his Bryant Hornets teammates finished second to no one as a team, winning the Bob Gravett Invitational Cross Country meet at Ouachita Baptist University on Saturday, Sept. 9.
In the season opener for the Hornets, they accumulated 82 points with all five scoring runners in the top 25. Little Rock Catholic (87) and Cabot (93), two 7A-Central Conference rivals, finished second and third, respectively.
In the junior boys division, the Hornets got off to a slow start but finished with a flurry to finish second only to Lake Hamilton. Bryant had 51 points to Lake Hamilton’s 35.
In the senior race, 22 teams and 205 runners competed. Brewer finished with a time of 16:04 over the 5K (3.1 mile) course with Blakley right on his tail at 16:18.
Todd McAdoo (17th in 18:19), Cody Fiser (19th in 18:26), Josh Harrison (21st in 18:28), and Ben Higgs (23rd in 18:31) rounded out the Hornets scoring quintet.
“This is a great way to kick off the season,” stated Hornets coach Steve Oury. “We’ve come close to winning this meet in the past, so it’s nice to break through and get the victory. We had several of our key runners struggle out there for various reasons, so it’s nice to know that we can win despite not clicking on all cylinders.
“Catholic ran a great race and we are going to have to improve if we want to stay ahead of them,” he added. “Ethan was a little sluggish but still ran a gritty race. We are gearing our training for November, so we may have some meets early in the year where we don’t feel rested, but that’s okay.”
Other finishers for Bryant were Preston Adami (32nd in 19:11), Alvin Rapien (38th in 19:24), Joey Fuoco (53rd in 19:52), Kiere Marshall (73rd in 20:33), Brandon Mueller (79th in 20:36), Daniel Hall (95th in 21:04), Remell Allen (101st in 21:17), Brandon Barnes (103rd in 21:19), Nick Pultro (105th in 21:20), Homer Coleman (112th in 21:31), Jeremy Cox (124th in 22:05), Trenton Palmer (131st in 22:28), Ben Griffin (145th in 22:52), and Jacob Pultro (162nd in 24:31).
For the Junior Hornets, Dillon Rhodes and Devon Norris finished in the top 10 to earn special awards. Rhodes finished eighth in 11:52 over the two-mile course while Norris was ninth in 11:54.
In all, seven Bryant runners finished in the top 25. The scoring group also included Jacob Clark (13th in 12:06), Chris Dubose (14th in 12:07) and Austin Benning (15th in 12:21) with Jacob Goff right there as well (16th in 12:22).
“We ran a very good race,” Oury stated. “Lake Hamilton is pretty tough. They got off to a quick start and we did a good job of getting ourselves back into contention, but they had the overall winner in the race and had three in the top seven. That’s always going to be tough to beat. Hopefully we can move our pack up a little bit and get them the next time we meet.”
Also for the Junior Hornets, Tyler Webb was 22nd in 12:39 followed by Jonathan Chapman (27th in 13:01), Colton Klaus (32nd in 13:11), Luke Lindsley (35th in 13:19), Matt Hill (37th in 13:23), Colton Branson (39th in 13:26), Kevin Nalley (42nd in 13:28), Ben Ackley (44th in 13:32), Logan Howard (45th in 13:33), Levi Lindsley (49th in 13:41), Wayne Hall (51st in 13:44), Daniel Tucker (68th in 14:23), Richard Nelson (72nd in 14:44), Ken Vega (73rd in 14:44), Michael Ma (79th in 14:56), Austin Kimbrough (82nd in 15:02), Dylan Ball (84th in 15:05), Spencer Arondt (85th in 15:06), Nathan Breeding (86th in 15:07), Travis Ferguson (98th in 16:03), and Tanner Morris (102nd in 16:40).