ATHLETICS | St Gerard’s AC’s U11 stars complete a clean sweep in Tullamore

Cara Miele and Zariah Faapito of Dundalk St Gerard’s AC who won silver in the U9 pairs turbo javelin at the Leinster Championships in Tullamore

Tullamore was the venue for the Leinster Pairs and U12 and U13 championships on Saturday last.

Making the two-hour journey to the midlands venue for St Gerard’s AC was an all girl squad of Cara Miele, Zariah and Elahna Faapito, Tara O’Connor, Grainne Moran, Lucy Mahon, Abaigh Moonan, Enya Silkena, Meabh O’Connor and Ciara Cunningham.

Once again the club’s young athletes stepped up to the mark with an inspirational display of girl power against the province’s best youngsters.

Getting the team off to a flying start were Cara and Zariah in the U9 girls pairs. In the turbo javelin they performed brilliantly to gain a well deserved silver medal for their efforts. Next up in the long jump, the girls once again put in a good performance.

Tara O’Connor and Grainne Moran of Dundalk St Gerard’s AC who won the 600m and 60m in the U11 pairs at the Leinster Championships in Tullamore

With the youngest members of the team doing well, the bar was set high for the club’s highly rated U11 girls group and they rose to the challenge with aplomb.

In the field events, Enya and Meabh paired up to take a magnificent double gold in the long jump and turbo javelin, proving too good for the opposition on the day.

Tara and Grainne and Abaigh and Lucy made up the other U11 pairs in the 600m and 60m. With two superb runs, Grainne and Tara stormed to victory in each of the two time trials in the 600m smashing their PBs to take the gold.

Abaigh and Lucy performed well on the day in what were hot contests. In the 60m, the girls repeated the dose to take another gold, albeit a much closer affair.

With only four events at U11, the girls achieved a clean sweep of the gold medals on offer in their age category with a rarely achieved quadruple!

With all those medals in the bank you might think that the girls had done enough on the day, however there was the U11 inter county relay still to come.

The Leinster winning Louth U11 relay team (centre) of Enya Silkena, Grainne Moran, Tara O’Connor and Meabh O’Connor of Dundalk St Gerard’s AC and Katie Donald of Glenmore AC

With the club’s Meabh, Tara, Enya and Grainne forming the county team there were high hopes of another strong showing and they put in another tremendous performance to take another great victory.

In the U12 individual competition, Elahna and Ciara gave strong performances. In the shot putt, Elahna took a bronze medal with another great series of throws.

Ciara ran strong race on the 600m and in the 60m she performed brilliantly to come through the heats and make the final where once again she showed continued improvement to give a good account of herself.

If the great performances on the day are anything to go by, the future is bright for the club’s young athletes who have given everyone a great confidence boost for the upcoming championships over the next month.

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