Contributed by Ken McLemore, Communication Director, Hope Public Schools
HOPE – In a track season that saw one Bobcat cinderman set a state record, the Hope High School track squad was represented in four events at the Arkansas Athletics Association Meet of Champions at Lake Hamilton on May 11.
Graduating seniors Nikorean Muldrow and Jaydon Riley represented HHS in three of the four events, including the 100-meter and 200-meter dash, and the long jump event.
Muldrow, who set a state record in the 70-meter sprint earlier in the season with a 7.0 second time, was within .04-second of his best in the 100-meter event at 10.60 seconds to finish second overall in the event at Lake Hamilton.
“This is against every classification and the top 16 in the state,” HHS Co-Athletic Director Phillip Turner said.
Muldrow met his personal best in the 200-meter event at 22.03 seconds to finish third in that event for the Bobcats. He placed first in the 100-meter at the state meet with a 10.73 second time and won the 200 meters at the state meet with a 22.13 time.
Riley placed fourth overall in the long jump at the Champions meet with a leap of 21-4.5 feet but was short his state track meet first place jump of 22-3.5 feet, which was a personal best at the time.
Muldrow and Riley also teamed with Au’Vion Horton and Mekhi Henderson for a ninth-place finish overall for the Bobcat 4×100 meter relay event at Lake Hamilton.
Bobcat Track Coach Doug Means said the season for Muldrow and Riley was remarkable, given that it was the first track season at HHS for both athletes.
“As a tenth-grader, the football coaches had timed Nikorean in the 40 for football, and noticed his natural speed,” Means said. “The coaches knew what Nikorean could do; but, he still may not understand his true abilities.”
He said Riley was also a natural track athlete, who did not have the opportunity to capitalize upon his potential until his senior year.
“This was his first year at Hope High,” Means said. “He came in fairly-well tuned into his track skills. All he had to do was practice hard and compete. He understands the jumping part of track.”