Northsea promotion charge gathers pace at Waterlooville

Rachel Christie swimming for Northsea. Picture: Mick Young
Rachel Christie swimming for Northsea. Picture: Mick Young

Comfortable Ceri secures emphatic national win

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Another sparkling performance from Portsmouth Northsea kept them in the hunt for promotion.

The impressive A squad went to Waterlooville and conquered in their second National Arena League South division one west meeting of the season.

It was always going to be a night of high drama with Northsea and Havant & Waterlooville doing battle at Waterlooville Leisure Centre.

Also in action were Maidenhead, Mid Sussex, Tilehurst and Hart.

It was the local sides who led the way, though.

Northsea streaked ahead to win with 249 points, while Havant & Waterlooville chased hard to finished second with 205 points.

The atmosphere was electric and Northsea wasted no time in surging into an early lead.

Four wins in the opening 10 races saw them open up a seven-point cushion and from there, there was no letting up.

Maidenhead and Havant & Waterloovile kept the pressure up but Northsea continued to dominate.

They recorded 45 top-three finishes out of the 50 races, winning 21.

It was an excellent performance from the club in all age groups.

There were individual victories for Northsea swimmers Faye Churcher (under-11 girls backstroke), Oliver Kincart (under-15 boys backstroke & butterfly), Will Condron (open butterfly) and Max Burnell (under-13 backstroke).

Sarah Owen (ladies’ 100m backstroke), Emma Trotman (under-15 freestyle), Luke Robins (under-15 100m freestyle), Sarah Hughes (ladies’ 100m breaststroke), Neil Redman (men’s 100m breaststroke) and James Miller (under-15 100m breaststroke) also won.

The team showed their strength in the relay events, too, with wins in the medley relays for the boys and girls 13 and under, boys and girls 15 and under, and the ladies’ and men’s open relay squads.

Freestyle relay squads – 13 and under boys and girls, and girls open also recorded wins.

The emphatic final margin of victory will ensure the swimmers go into next month’s final round full of confidence as they chase promotion.

Northsea are third in the table behind leaders Newbury and Basingstoke.

Meanwhile, for the second successive month the Mountbatten Centre was packed out for action on Saturday.

Hosts Portsmouth Northsea B stormed to victory as eight teams fought out round two.

They now have back-to-back wins, putting them top of National Arena League South division two west.

Club captain Sam Redman led the way with victory in the men’s open individual medley.

Northsea trailed Didcot Barramundi by four points after 10 races.

But the hosts turned that around with victories from Katie Nobble (under-13 breaststroke), Ashley Ball (men’s butterfly), Elise Sherwin (under-13 backstroke), Will Pointon (under-15 butterfly) and Megan Owen (ladies’ backstroke) saw them storm into a 13-point lead from which they never looked back.

A further nine wins, including glory for Hannah St John Mosse, Hannah Osbourne, Aaron Lloyd, Maddelaine Brown, Aaron Crockford and Tom Diaper-Fox secured a 30-point success.