PERSHORE Swimming Club finished in fourth place in a hard fought PGL League final held at Gloucester.
Pershore had qualified in first place after the heats and, against tough opposition from clubs such as Worcester, Cheltenham, Redditch, Northgate, Wyre Forest, Evesham and Stourbridge, they swam brilliantly to finish fourth behind eventual winners Worcester in this development competition which has speeding tickets as part of its format.
Jamie Saunders started well for Pershore with a second placed finish in the boys’ 13/14 50m fly in 37.30 and the first win for Pershore came in the boys’ 10/u medley relay in 1.21.97 (James Heeks, David Annis, Ollie Smith and Harry Wycherley), while the girls followed with a third in 1.23.10 (Tamara Marsden, Jasmine Hoskins, Amelia Gearey and Georgia Winkley) in the same event.
Martha Cross claimed maximum points in the girls’ 9-year 25m freestyle in 18.74 and another first place soon followed in the boys’ 12/u medley relay in 1.11.84 (Ronan Williams, Kieran Cooper, Saunders and Cameron Leach).
After 15 events Pershore found themselves in fourth place behind early leaders Worcester.
Sophie Thomas finished second in the girls’ 11/u 25m freestyle in 16.89 and Georgia Winkley secured another victory in the girls’ 10/u 25m fly in 20.33.
The boys’ 13/14 medley relay team (Luke Perry, Jamie West, Josh Sharratt and Saunders) and girls’ 13/14 medley relay team (Charlotte Downey, Hannah Simister, Amy Cooper and Helena Leach) both put in strong performances, with the boys claiming third place in 1.21.97 and the girls second place in 1.23.10.
Lauren Annis swam to first place in the 12/u 50m breaststroke in 46.08 and James Heeks grabbed second place in the boys’ 10/u 25m freestyle in 17.59.
After 30 events Pershore still found themselves in fourth place but ahead of local rivals Evesham.
Lewis Cribbin grabbed a second placed finish in the boys’ 9-year 25m backstroke in 23.87 and Perry also secured second place in the boys’ 13/14 50m breaststroke in 40.48.
Caitlin Yates claimed another victory in the girls’ 13/14 50m breaststroke in 41.90 and Downey produced a strong swim to win the 12/u 50m freestyle in 33.18.
Heeks snatched second place in the boys’ 10/u 25m backstroke in 21.47, the boys’ 11/u medley relay squad (Williams, Owen Kirby, Leo Rendall-Baker and Leach) produced a strong swim to claim first place in 1.16.86 and the mixed 9-year medley relay team (Gabriella Barry, David Annis, Cross and Ethan Stanley) added to the points total with a third placed finish in 1.29.23.
A string of superb first placed finishes in the girls’ 12/u 50m fly (Holly Winkley, 40.10), boys’ 11/u 25m backstroke (Kirby, 20.67), girls’ 11/u 25m backstroke (Yates, 19.37), boys’ 10/u 25m breaststroke (Annis, 23.62) and the boys’ 9-year 25m fly (Lewis, 22.46) moved Pershore into second place after 45 events, level with Cheltenham but still behind leaders Worcester.
With the final relay events remaining, Pershore were looking to secure more podium finishes. The girls’ 13/14 freestyle relay team (Isobel Cumming, Cooper, Simister and Leach) grabbed second place in 1.01.62 before the boys’ 11/u freestyle relay squad (Saunders, Leach, Williams and Cooper) claimed another first place finish in 1.04.24.
The mixed 9-year freestyle relay team (Cross, Cribbin, Barry and Annis) also added a first place in 1.13.35 and the boys’ 12/u freestyle squad grabbed third place in 1.04.39.
In the final two events – the cannon relays – the boys finished in fifth place in 2.56.22 and the girls finished in second place in 2.48.86.
The final positions were Worcester 327 points, Cheltenham 297, Redditch 284, Pershore 279, Stourbridge 233, Wyre Forest 225, Northgate 219 and Evesham 216.
There were good performances throughout the Pershore team including 21 personal bests, numerous speeding tickets and admirable swims from Macey French, Luke Drayton, Grace Styler and Jasmine Franks.