A healthy Madison Galindo put the hurt on the competition at the Class 6A state track and field championship last week at Fort Smith Southside.
Galindo ran on Bentonville's record-breaking 4x800 relay team; set a meet record in 3,200; won the 1,600 and finished third in the 800 for the Lady Tigers, who ran away with the team title. For her effort, Galindo is the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette girls Player of the Week. Gunnar Woolard of Gravette is the NWADG boys Player of Week.
Galindo was suffering from the flu at the state meet last spring, but she tried to run anyway and did not rise to her usual standard. Bentonville Coach Randy Ramaker saw the best of Galindo on a day of dominance that began when the team of Allison Fernstrom, Hannah Hanson, Devyn O'Daniel and Galindo shattered both the meet record and the overall state record in the 4X800 relay with a time of 9 minutes, 24.11 seconds.
Galindo, however, wasn't finished with the record books at that point. After she won the 1,600 in 5:00.87 and finished third in the 800, the senior returned for the 3,200 and had a winning time of 10:59.60, breaking the previous meet record of 11:04.31 set by Ashley Williams of Mount St. Mary in 2003.
"Madison Galindo was out for redemption from the following year where she was sick for the state meet and could not run to her potential," Ramaker said. "She had the fortune to have three other awesome runners to pair with to set a state record in the 4 x 800. She gave herself a chance to go sub-5 min in the 1600 and fell just short. Not many have achieved this in Arkansas. Then she ran the 800 to score points for her team. The 3200 was all guts. She showed her strength, determination and mental toughness in that race in a state record time."
Woolard was instrumental in helping Gravette win the 4A-North regional championship in baseball last week. The junior left-hander struck out 9 and allowed only 2 hits in five innings Saturday in the championship game against Dardanelle. Woolard went 2-for-4 at the plate, including a single in the bottom of the seventh as the Lions rallied from two runs down to defeat the Sand Lizards 6-5.
Woolard, who is an all-state basketball player at Gravette, had a hit and three stolen bases against Pottsville and he walked twice and pitched an inning in relief against Morrilton in earlier tournament games.
"Gunnar has been playing at a high level consistently all season, and this week wasn't any different," Gravette Coach Bryan Bearden said. "Our offense goes as he goes and, thankfully, Gunnar was on his game all week."