Photos courtesy of Julie Shelby
FAYETTEVILLE — The Bryant Hornets capped off the 5A-7A State Indoor Track Championships with a new indoor state record in the 4 x 400 meter relay. The relay team of Pierce Finney, Brenden Young, Steven Murdock, and John Winn ran a time of 3:25.87, which broke a record that had stood since 1997.
The Hornets scored a total of 87 points to place 3rd in the team standings, only 3.66 points behind runner-up Rogers. Bentonville won the team title with a score of 101.5.
“I’ve never been prouder of how a team competed,” stated Bryant coach Steve Oury. “I would guess we may have set a record for the highest point total not to either win or place second. John Winn and Steven Murdock were just spectacular, as was Brenden Young. I had no idea that we had broken the state record in the 4 x 400 until after the event. The old record was 3:28, so they obliterated it.
“To win a state championship you have to be good and have a little luck,” he added. “We just didn’t get enough help from other teams out there as far as taking points away from Bentonville and Rogers. We scored more points than I had projected us to, so I couldn’t have asked for more of them. This will provide us with plenty of motivation for the upcoming outdoor season.”
Individually, Winn earned state championships in both the 400-meter dash (49.54 seconds) and the 200-meter dash (22.78). Young won a state championship in the 60-meter hurdles with a time of 8.82. Murdock placed second in the 400-meter dash with a time of 50.26, earned a third place finish in the 200-meter dash (22.87), and placed fourth in the 60-meter dash (7.30).
Mar’Kevius Nelson broke his own school record in the triple jump with a leap of 44′ 11″, which earned him a runner-up finish in the event. Nelson also placed fifth in the long jump with a jump of 21′ 1.5″. Justin Combs placed fourth in the pole vault with a clearance of 14′ 0″.
Mark Winn placed fourth in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:02.33, and Charlie Terry finished seventh in the 3200-meter run in a time of 10:12.11. The 4 x 800 relay team of Devon Davis, Joe Sartini, Terry, and Mark Winn placed fifth in a time of 8:30.74.
“Coach Brad Stroud has done a great job working with our jumpers,” Oury noted. “Mar’Kevius Nelson was clutch in the triple jump, and Devon Davis set new personal records in both the long jump and triple jump. Also, Coach Keith Dale, who works with the hurdlers, was instrumental in Brenden Young’s victory.”
The Hornets open the outdoor season on Friday, March 13, at the Panther Relays in Benton. They’ll host the annual Hornet Relays on Thursday, March 19.