Friday, March 10, 2017

SPORTS STORY >> Hillside ladies finish third at Benton relays

Leader sports editor

The Lady Bear track team has high expectations this outdoor season, and got it off to a good start Thursday in the Benton-McCauley Relays at Benton High School.

Sylvan Hills finished third overall behind Class 7A Bryant and 6A Texarkana, and was the smallest school in the top five. Class 6A schools Lake Hamilton and Sheridan rounded out the Top-5 in the 13-team competition.

Bryant finished with 114 points, while Texarkana barely edged out Sylvan Hills for second place, beating the Lady Bears by a half point – 96 to 95.5. LHHS scored 79.5 and Sheridan 77.5.

Sylvan Hills girls’ coach Grover Garrison was pleased with his team’s overall performance, but didn’t go all out in trying to maximize team points.

“For the most part, we used it as a pretty good opportunity for the girls to kind of stretch their legs a little bit,” Garrison said. “We were trying to pre-qualify for state in a few things and we were able to do that. So overall it was a good meet.”

The Sylvan Hills relay teams won two of the three relays and finished second in the third. The 4x100 and 4x800 team took first place. The 4x400 team finished second, but did run a state qualifying time, as did the 4x100 team.

Ashley Jefferson, Allysia Marbley, Erykah Sanders and Dallyn Stubbs won the 4x800 race. They beat Bryant by more than five seconds with a time of 10:46.21.

In the 4x100, O’Shayla Muldrow, Ayana Harris, Aliya Hatton and Mia Heard nudged Texarkana by .37 seconds with a time of 49.83. Though good enough for first place and to pre-qualify for state, Garrison wasn’t entirely pleased with the time.

“We had three horrible hand-offs and still won,” Garrison said. “So I’m not going to complain too much right now, but we can definitely run that event faster.”

The 4x400 team that finished second included Jefferson, Muldrow, Jordan Sanders and Stubbs.

Sylvan Hills only scored two points total in the three distance races, but that was mainly because Garrison did not make those events a priority in the first meet of the season. Despite winning the 4x800 relay, Sylvan Hills did not enter anyone in the 800-meter race.

Mia Heard qualified for the state meet in the triple jump with a leap of 35-feet, 7-inches. She finished second to Asia Anderson of Pulaski Robinson by five inches. Makayla Smith took third in that event with a distance of 33-11.

Heard placed third in the long jump behind Monticello’s Nia Fillmore and Anderson. Lady Bears Alexis Lee and Jordan Sanders placed fifth and eighth in that event, bring ing Sylvan Hills’ total points in the long jump to 11.

Heard also took third in the 100-meter dash with a time of 12.91, and was fifth in the 200-meter dash. Muldrow and Harris finished seventh and eighth in the 200.

Jordan Sanders finished second in the 400-meter race behind Bryant’s Jadyn Lewis. Lee finished eighth in that event.

The Lady Bears placed two runners in the grueling 300-meter hurdles. Smith finished third with a time of 50.17 and Erykah Sanders took fifth with a 50.67.

Daviunia Jones and Dasia Harris finished sixth and eighth respectively in the high jump, each clearing 4-8. Jayla Bell finished sixth in the shot put and seventh in the discus, and Marbley finished seventh in the 3,200-meter race.

Sylvan Hills will be in the Bryant relays on Tuesday, then on to Morrilton next Thursday.