RUSSELLVILLE â€“ The Bryant Hornets track team competed in the Russellville Cyclone Invitational Friday night, earning a second-place finish in what is regarded as the biggest and most competitive regular season meet of the season in the state of Arkansas. Â
The Hornets scored 72.5 points to finish behind team champion Â Bentonville (82 points). Â Little Rock Central (66), Rogers Heritage (55), and Little Rock Catholic (47) finished out the top five teams. Â Twenty four teams scored in the meet, which featured 13 out of the 16 teams in class 7A. Â
BENTON â€“ Former Benton Lady Panthers senior forward Allison Reynolds was named to the 6A All-State Tournament Team, but the fact that Benton finished runner-up in the 6A South Conference to El Dorado, only two, not three, Lady Panthers were recognized as all state.
Voted by the 6A South coaches, junior guard Braxton Chumley and junior forward Braylee Landreth got the two spots for Benton, but Reynolds was voted by the conference coaches as a top player in the state.
BENTON â€“ The Benton Panthers were down early, but came back to defeat rival Sheridan Yellowjackets 6-2 in 7A/6A South Conference action on Friday at Panthers Field. Sophomore lefty Chase Nix threw five shutout innings of hitless relief to earn the win.
â€śI was real proud of our pitching,â€ť Benton Coach Mark Balisterri said. â€śBrian (Krikorian) was struggling as far as throwing strikes. They hit it hard a couple times. I feel like we could have stuck with him and been OK, but his pitch count was up for two innings for him and we didnâ€™t want to burn both our starters on Tuesday.
HASKELL -- After beginning spring break 2014 with a sour taste in its mouth following a 16-2 defeat to Arkadelphia, Harmony Grove bounced back with a statement win over Lafayette County on Saturday, 13-3. To the tune of 10 hits, 13 runs and 11 stolen bases, the Cardinals got back on track just in time for their 5-3A conference opener today at Glen Rose.
â€śIt feels good to have a win,â€ť Head Coach Brandon Mynhier said. â€śWe didnâ€™t think we were going to get to play after all the bad weather so it was good to come back after having a lot of time off and score some runs and hit the ball and win.â€ť
TAMPA, Fla. â€“ The Bryant Hornets defeated Rockford, Ill., on Friday morning 10-1 to sweep the Tampa Spring Training Tournament. The Hornetsâ€™ varsity and junior varsity went a combined 8-0 in the tournament.
Junior Jason Hastings started for Bryant on Friday and pitched five innings of one-run ball, which Rockford scored on a squeeze bunt.
The undefeated record was just a bonus as the Hornets played a lot of baseball and gained much-needed experience going into 7A/6A South Conference season when the team returns to face J.A. Fair on Tuesday.
BRYANT â€“ Junior pitcher Blaine Knight struck out the first four batters he faced and nine straight to start, to lead the Bryant Hornets to a 11-1 five-inning victory over the Pine Bluff Zebras in 7A/6A South action on Friday at Hornets Field.
Knight picked up the win giving up one run on one hit, walking two and striking out eight for the game.
The Hornets would strike first early as junior Drew Tipton hit a one-out double to left field and came around to score when third-place batter Chase Tucker singled up the middle for the 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning.
NORTH LITTLE ROCK -- Friday was night full of defending champions and second-place finishers in North Little Rock. The first round of play slated the defending 3A champ Harmony Grove against 1Aâ€™s victor Taylor Lady Tigers. With two teams looking for a repeat this season, Harmony Grove got in the early shot, punching Taylor in the mouth to the tune of 9-0.
â€śWe hit very well today,â€ť Head Coach Sammi Massey said. â€śWe played really well. Other than one error on defense it went pretty well.â€ť
LITTLE ROCK â€“ After dropping a 5-2 decision to Bryant in the first 7A/6A South Conference game of the season, the Benton Panthers soccer team bounced back to defeat Vilonia 1-0, but fell once again on Friday on the road. With a 1-1 score at the end of regulation, the JA Fair War Eagles won a 5-4 shootout over Benton to put a tired Panthers team at 5-2 overall and 0-2 in the South.
The Panthers have played eight games in the past 11 days.
JESSIEVILLE â€“ The Bauxite Miners won their first-ever overall team track meet in the Senior High Lion Relays on Thursday in Jessieville. The Miners blistered the field scoring 129 points, outdistancing second-place Caddo Hills (80.5) by almost 50 points. The Lady Miners tied with Caddo Hills for third at the meet with 66 points, behind first-place Jessieville (125) and second-place Magnet Cove (81).
POYEN â€” No matter how the rest of the season goes for the Harmony Grove Cardinals, the 2014 season will go down as a championship year. After beating Cutter Morning Star and Magnet Cove in the first two games of the Poyen Tournament last week, the Cardinals flew past 5-3A conference rival Glen Rose 5-0 to capture the hardware.
â€śIt was a great win,â€ť Head Coach Brandon Mynhier said. â€śYou want to win against Glen Rose anytime you can and they are going to always put a great team on the field. We just went out and tried to win a championship. It was a fun time for all of us.â€ť