INDIANAPOLIS—Memo to Bellmont athletic director Dale Manis--if you're thinking of ordering a new plaque for the trophy case at Bellmont to honor the new school record in girls cross country set by Bailey Beery over a week ago, put those thoughts on hold.
Beery, who established the new mark of 18:38.6 a week ago Saturday at the Spencerville, Ohio, Invitational, (breaking an eight-year standard set in 2005 by Wendy Mahlan of 18:49), absolutely shattered her own record last Saturday as the Squaws ran with some of the top guns in the state at the 49th annual Ben Davis Invitational, and Beery placed second with a time of 17:50.
Avon's Malyka Abramson won the meet in 17:41 but had to repel a late challenge from Beery who took the lead with about 600 meters to go.
"To put it into perspective, this was the first time in the history of the Ben Davis Invitational that any girl had run under 18 minutes," pointed out Bellmont coach Carl Risch, adding "I'd have to do some research but I'd say there haven't been a lot of girls in the state of Indiana who have gone under 18 minutes. There have been some, but the winner of the state finals in at least the last two years has been over 18."
Risch pointed out that Beery was running about three and a half MINUTES slower at this point last year but hard work and experience has paid off for the Bellmont sophomore. He said the Avon runner had "not been pushed much so far this season and when Bailey passed her with about 600 meters to go (5K race or about 3.2 miles) that brought her back to reality. Abramson led probably the last 400-500 meters."