Photos courtesy of Julie Shelby
LITTLE ROCK — The Bryant Lady Hornets cross country team started off the 2014 season in style on Saturday by winning the team championship in a dominating performance at the Minuteman Cross Country Invitational at Western Hills Park in Little Rock.
The Lady Hornets put all their scoring runners in the top 11 places to win with a score of 33 points. Little Rock Christian was runner-up with 51 points followed by Cabot (88), Mount St. Mary (118), Vilonia (132), and Pulaski Academy (168). There were 15 teams and 114 total runners in the race.
Senior Caitlyn Bell and junior Hannah Shelby led the Lady Hornets’ effort. Both maintained a presence with the leaders throughout the race with Bell taking fourth with a time of 20:05 and Shelby finishing fifth with a time of 20:17. Senior Talyn Billins was Bryant’s third runner taking eighth place in 20:51. Finishing out the scoring five was sophomore Sydney Wilson (ninth, 21:46) and junior Reagan Smith (11th, 21:54).
Senior Lauren Ackley finished 17th in 22:25 to also receive a top 20 medal. Sophomore Rachel Curtis was 22nd in 23:05 to complete the top seven for Bryant.
“I was extremely proud of the team effort today,” declared Bryant coach Danny Westbrook. “Caitlyn Bell, Hannah Shelby, and Talyn Billins did a great job going to the front and staying there. Sydney Willson had a strong finish and Reagan Smith gets the best performance award this week. She really surprised me with an awesome effort.
“Other notable performances today were Alyssa and Alanna Cordova, Esmeralda Limon, and Katie Lynch,” he added. “They all had great races today.”