Another knife-edge day for LPS

Liverpool Pembroke Sefton seniors approached the first of the Northern Track and Field matches of the season at Stretford with several members missing due to the clash with the British Universities Championships. The first meeting has usually proved disastrous for LPS but the squad looked marginally stronger on this occasion. What was not taken into account was the strength of Division 2W this year with Liverpool Harriers even fielding heptathlete Katrina Johnson-Thompson, Jessica Ennis`s likely successor.

The club was under pressure throughout the day. For the women, Amelia McLaughlin provided the only A string win in the High Jump with an excellent 1.74m and with Hannah Wills(1.40m) taking joint second in the B event this was good point scoring. The sprinters, Jessica Wohler and Hannah Wills, were up against sharp opposition but there were two courageous runs in the 800m from Maxine Thompson(2.33.9) and Georgie Hannaway(2.47.3) both bagging third spots in the A and B races. Maxine had a busy afternoon collecting points in the 400m but also at 1500m and 3000m assisted by Vicki Jones and Sam Wade. After a recent club record in the Hammer Rachel Hutchinson took third in that event(36.52m) and third in the Discus(22.0m). Charlotte Christian provided good back up in several events but notably was winner of the B Hammer with 34.52m. Tawanda Lungu and Grace Whitfield worked hard in the horizontal jumps for valuable points. But the day really belongs to Javelin thrower, Emily Carr, not only for second with 32.92m but beating Johnson-Thompson by over a metre. She will remember that for a long time.

For the men Nathan Hilton had a marginal win in the 400m but with the highly respectable time of 48.9. Sean Bosman was second B runner with 52.00. There was courage aplenty in the 800m as Rob Parkinson was fourth(2.03.6) and a mature-looking  Jonathan Bride raced to B success with 2.04.9. Warren Turner occupied fourth at 1500m (4.21.3) and there were sterling runs from James Loftus(15.57.2) and Alistair Nelson(16.25.3) were third and second respectively in the A/B line-up. The big point scoring though was going on in the field events with a terrific win in the Shot(12.69m) for new signing, Chris Arnold. The vet trio of Mark Line, Dave Brown and Gary Ireland buzzed around successfully in the range of throws. Line made useful contributions also in the Pole Vault together with the older Dave McComb. Billy Williams was not quite at his best in the High Jump but 1.75m secured third. Dave McComb was third in the B with 1.55m. Dominic O`Hanlon leapt to fourth in the Long Jump with 5.51m.

The day wound up with a great win in the men`s 4 x 400m relay. Hopes were then high but in one of the tightest league encounters ever a mere 56 points separated all 6 teams. Sadly LPS were the big losers and sixth. But the club`s resilience is famous and future matches will certainly not go this way. Potential disaster does seem to bring out the best in the club. Results

Charles Gains

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