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KENDALLVILLE—A highly anticipated match-up between two of the state's top sprinters turned out decidedly in Bellmont's favor Tuesday night in a Northeast Hoosier Conference girls track triangular meet at East Noble.
The Squaws easily won with 80 points while the host Knights were second at 50 and Homestead was a distant third at 37 in a meet that also featured a new Bellmont school record in the long jump.
Bellmont won every running event in which they were entered. The Squaws have had trouble with handoffs in the 4x100 relay this year to date and thus did not have an entry in that race.
Both Alexis Harvey of Bellmont and Ari Nelson of Homestead scored in the sprint events at the IHSAA State Finals last year and the two resumed their rivalry Tuesday with Harvey getting a decisive edge. Harvey blew the competition in the 200 dash, an event coach Carl Risch says is her best race, out of the water with a time of :24.86, missing the BHS school record by .20. Nelson was second but with a clocking of :26.90.
Harvey just missed eclipsing the school record in the 100 meter dash as she blazed past Nelson with a :12.17 to :12.64 finish.
The third individual event that Harvey was penciled in at, the 400 dash, is also one in which she owns the school record, but she was nosed out by teammate Bailee Hankenson, 1:01.58 to 1:02.25.
"The match-up between Alexis and Ari was certainly a much anticipated one but it turned out to be pretty decisive in Alexis' favor," analyzed Risch, adding the 200 race was a very dominating victory for Harvey.
"She took the lead almost immediately in that race and then coming off the turn she just took over and there was never any doubt who was going to win," he said.
Holly Hankenson collected three individual blue ribbons on the day while sister Bailee ended up with two along with one as the anchor of the 4x800 relay team.