ROUND two of the Nuneaton & District Junior Swimming League (Division One) saw Pershore Swimming Club drawn against Leicester Sharks A, Stourbridge A, Nuneaton, Chase and Welshpool Sharks and they managed a creditable fourth placed finish.
This was another tough draw for Pershore, enjoying their second season in the top flight, but needing some good results to ensure they retain their place in the first division.
Fielding an under-strength team with several key swimmers unfortunately unavailable to compete, Pershore’s team of youngsters battled hard to a well deserved fourth place in the end, with Leicester Sharks clear winners on the night.
Macey French got Pershore off to a flying start, coming second in the girls 10-year-old 50m freestyle in 35.59, and Max Arris – swimming for the first time in this competition – produced a massive PB in the boys event, touching in 40.11.
Amelia Gearey added a fifth place for Pershore in the girls 9-year-old 25m breaststroke, coming home in 24.53.
The girls and boys 11/u 4x25m relays soon got Pershore back amongst the points, with the girls producing a solid performance to take fourth in 1.12.34, whilst the boys grabbed third place in 1.17.42.
Daisy Tolley kept up Pershore’s run of good form with an excellent third place in the girls 12/u 50m backstroke in 37.44, before Simon Sweatman produced Pershore’s first win of the evening with a dominant performance in the boys 50m backstroke, winning in 34.03.
Jasmine Franks, who earlier had been competing at the Gloucester Open, did not show any signs of being tired as she touched in second place in the girls 10-year-old 50m breaststroke in 48.13, while Cameron Leach came fifth in the boys 50m breaststroke in 53.87 and was also fifth in the 50m backstroke in 46.28.
After ten events, Leicester had already built a clear lead in first place on 51 points, with Stourbridge on 39 and Pershore on 32.
The girls and boys 9-year-old 4x25m medley teams both showed the talent is coming through at the younger end of the club, with the girls team managing fourth place in 1.26.00 and the boys grabbing an excellent third in 1.34.48.
In the 11-year-old category, the girls and boys 4x25m freestyle relay teams both produced strong performances, with the girls snatching third in 1.04.19 and the boys managing a second place in 1.07.09.
Naomi Marsden, who celebrated her 12th birthday at the gala, produced a massive PB in the girls 12/u 50m fly, hitting the wall in 37.05 to secure fourth place. Marsden also put in a good performance in the 50m breaststroke, just being edged into fifth spot in 45.24.
Sweatman again stepped up and produced the goods for Pershore in one of his strongest events, easily winning the 50m fly in 33.71 and delivering the team’s second maximum points of the evening.
Megan Annis soon made it victory number three for Pershore with a superb victory in the girls 11/u 50m backstroke in 36.16. Annis was also fourth in the girls 12/u 50m in 33.00.
Chris Vizard, in excellent form at the Gloucester Open recently, again looked strong in the boys 12/u 50m breaststroke with an impressive 42.66.
After 25 events, Leicester Sharks had extended their lead and looked unbeatable, with Pershore still in third place behind Stourbridge A.
William Gearey was in dominant form, securing three victories for Pershore, coming home in first place in the boys 11/u 50m fly in 33.94 as well as winning both the 11/u and 12/u 50m freestyles in 30.79 and 29.95 respectively.
Georgia Winkley produced the performance of the night, winning the girls 9-year-old 25m backstroke in a fantastic time of 19.91.
Alexandra Barry grabbed fourth place in the girls 11/u 50m fly in 37.87, Lauren Annis (9) was placed fifth in the 9-year-old 25m fly in 21.46 and fourth in the 25m freestyle in 18.37, whilst Robert Thorner put in a brave display in the boys 9-year-old 25m fly, as did Lewis Cribben in the 25m freestyle.
Hamish Cross delivered an excellent third place for Pershore in the boys 11/u 50m breaststroke in 50.18, with Charlotte Downey just edged into fourth in the girls equivalent event in 46.53. Leo Rendall-Baker (10) produced a time of 20.17 and fifth place in the boys 25m fly.
The other victories for Pershore were delivered by the boys 12/u quartet of Josh Sharratt, Vizard, Sweatman and Gearey who won by clear margins in both the 4x25m freestyle relay in 58.75 and the 4x25m medley relay in 1.14.62.
The final standings saw Leicester Sharks winning on 251 points, Stourbridge second on 195, Chase third on 164 and Pershore fourth on 161.
Commenting on the performance, Pershore’s head coach Tom Naughton said: “Another tough draw for us but all the swimmers responded in a very positive manner. Hopefully this result will help us retain our place in Division One and we know we need to deliver again in the final round.”