ATHLETICS | St Gerard’s AC athletes shine in the sun at Louth Championships

Maria Smith (centre) of Dundalk St Gerard’s AC on the podium with Tara Meier and Hannah Reilly after her victory in the girls 100m at the Louth Championships in Bush

The Louth Juvenile Championships which took place over three days at Drogheda and Bush last weekend.

While the sun shone brightly, the north and east winds made it chilly on the first two days but thankfully abated on Sunday to make the closing day simply glorious.

Glorious it was on the competition front too for all the young athletes of Dundalk St Gerard’s AC who performed brilliantly and did themselves and their club proud.

Getting the show rolling on Friday evening was Ciara Cunningham who took a great bronze in the U12 girl’s hurdles before going on to take fourth in the sprint. She also had a good run in the 600m on Saturday.

Leah Miele took a well-deserved bronze in the U13 javelin and Ava O’Hanlon had a great weekend of competition, taking gold in the U14 girl’s javelin, fourth in the shot and doing really well in her other events.

Kerrie Hazzard took a fine silver in the U15 high jump and bronze in the hurdles while Adam Hanratty took silver in the U15 boy’s javelin and bronze in the shot putt.

The enigmatic Maria Smith had a superb championship, taking gold in the U16 girls long jump, gold in the 100m, silver in the 200m and another gold in the relay.

Keanu Van Beek led a one, two, three for the club in the U16 boys shot with George Maas second and Jamie Wynne third. In the long jump, Keanu took second and another great silver in the 100m. In the javelin, George Maas took gold and Jamie was second in the 200m with George third.

The winning Dundalk St Gerard’s AC U16 girls relay team of Ellen Murphy, Ellen McBride, Caoimhe O’Callaghan and Maria Smith on the podium along with the Blackrock AC and Boyne AC teams at the Louth Championships in Bush

In the U9 girl’s events, Cara Miele was in top form with a gold medal in the long jump and turbo javelin with Zariah Faapito taking silver and a close fourth place finish in the sprint.

Sarah Holmes, Niamh Gorham and Molly O’Callaghan did well too while Liam Bingham and Finn O’Connor gave a good account in the boys U9.

Carmen Rasandratana, Lucy Rosbotham, Hannah Toal, Sadbh Brannigan, Doireann Conlon, Keeley Mooney and Nicole Mulholland all showed up well in the girls U10.

Doireann built on her recent performances with a great bronze in the sprint and an impressive victory in the 500m. In the turbo javelin, Lucy and Carmen were in the medals with great throws. Logan Carroll and Oran Keogh showed great improvement in the U10 boy’s category.

There was a bumper crew of U11 girls, made up of Tamelia Lewis, Lucy Mahon, Dara McEnteggart, Enya Silkena, Abaigh Moonan, Meabh O’Connor, Grainne Moran and Tara O’Connor in action.

In the sprints, Grainne led home a one, two, three, four from Tara, Enya and Meabh. In the long jump, Meabh broke the championship record in another clean sweep from Enya, and Tara.

In the turbo javelin, Enya and Meabh made it another one, two with fine efforts while the 600m saw another great tactical run from Enya to lead home Tara, Abaigh and Grainne in a one, two, three and four. Conor Gorham, Hayden Mulholland and Ethan Mullen also did well in the boys U11.

Rachel Culligan performed well for the U12 girls on Saturday but unfortunately, couldn’t compete on Sunday due to injury. In the U12 shot putt, Elahna Faapito enjoyed a great win while Mia Keeley jumped to gold in the long jump with Nicola McElroy just missing out in fourth place.

Quadruple gold medalist Joe Lennon (286) of Dundalk St Gerard’s AC on his way to victory in the U15 boys 100m at the Louth Championships in Bush

Claire Woods threw brilliantly to take third in the turbo javelin and Sylvia Keogh, Emily Moran and Rachel Marley also put in great efforts.

Newcomer Andrew Rosbotham, Aaron Clarke, Colm Drumm and Hely Rasandratana had good performances in the boy’s U12 category. Hely just missed out on the sprint final, Colm was fourth in the shot, Aaron ran strongly and Andrew — after only a week’s tutelage from a wily Cavan man — took third place in the turbo javelin!

Amy Toal Eimear Kinsella and Ciara Gorham put in good efforts for the girls U13s and Aoife Gorham, Tolulope Stephen, Isabel Holmes and Leah Mooney went well in the girls U14s.

Ellen Mcbride took third in a very close fought U15 girls 200m and Patricia Jumbo-Gula took third in the 100m where Ellen Murphy performed well too.

Joe Lennon was on top form, taking gold in the U15 boys 100m, 200m, shot putt and long jump on what was a fantastic weekend for him while Conor Toal took silver in the shot putt.

Caoimhe O’Callaghan enjoyed an impressive debut for the club with a great third place finish in the U16 girls 800m and looks like an athlete with great potential. Niamh Mulligan won a well-deserved bronze medal in the U17 girls 100m.

Following on from a great heptathlon victory in England the previous week, Kate O’Connor was an impressive winner of the U19 girls 200m with Niamh Belton running a great race in third.

Orlagh Conway was third in the U19 girls 800m with Kate Smyth in fourth. In the 1500m Caitlin Mulholland was second with Orlagh third and Kate fourth.

Elahna Faapito of Dundalk St Gerard’s AC enjoying her win in the U12 girls shot putt at the Louth Championships in Bush

In the relays, the U9 girl’s team of Cara, Niamh, Zariah, Sarah and Molly took gold. The U10 girls Carmen, Doireann, Lucy and Nicole ran well while the U11 girl’s team of Meabh, Tara, Enya and Grainne stormed to victory with the second squad of Tamelia, Lucy, Abaigh and Dara finishing just outside the medals.

The U11 boys, Conor, Hayden, Ethan and Logan also did well and the U12 girls, Nichola, Mia, Elahna and Claire gave a good account of themselves. Ciara, Rachel, Leah and Amy did well in the U13 race and the U14 girls Ava, Tololupe, Aoife and Isabel did also.

The U16 girls swooped late to win a very exciting race with the two Ellens, Caoimhe and Maria, all to the fore. The U16 boys took silver with George, Jamie, Conor and Joe fighting hard.

Last up was the U19 girl’s squad of Caitlin, Orlagh, Kate and Niamh who took gold to sign off on a great weekend of athletics for the club.

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