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Reports - June 2011

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28 June 2011

Three young women from St Peter's AC made the trip to Tullamore last Sunday for the Irish Junior (Under 20) and Under 23 Championships. They enjoyed considerable success, as they returned north-eastwards with one gold and two bronze medals.

Olivia McDonald retained her national Under 23 title in the Javelin, winning with a season's best throw of 37.01m. This is the fourth successive year in which Olivia has won the Irish title in this event in her age group. She won at Under 19 level in 2008, at Junior level in 2009 and at Under 23 level in 2010 and 2011.

Frances Rogers showed that she is well on the way to recovering from her recent wrist injury, as she struck bronze in the Under 23 Shot Putt with a best effort on the day of 9.98m. Her cousin Emily Rogers also took bronze in the Junior High Jump. She cleared 1.65m, just 3cm below her recent personal best. For both Frances and Emily these were their first national medals at Junior or Under 23 level.

Following such a successful day on Sunday, all at the Dromiskin-based club will now be hoping for further medals when the Irish Juvenile Championships are staged in Tullamore over two weekends next month.

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21 June 2011

Thirteen athletes from St Peter's AC made the trip to Tullamore last weekend for the Leinster Championships for the Under 13 to 19 age groups. They produced some impressive performances and returned home with one gold, six silver and four bronze medals. In addition, eight of the team qualified to compete in next month's Irish Championships, which will also be staged at the Co Offaly venue.

Lauren Finegan was the star performer for the Dromiskin-based club, as she took gold in the U15 Javelin with a tremendous championship best performance of 33.75m. Martin McGrane also impressed in the U14 throws, taking silver in both the Shot (10.05m) and Discus (24.42m). In the former event he defeated the reigning Leinster and Irish indoor champion.

Mark Rogers, somewhat hampered by a recent hip injury, took silver in the U16 High Jump (1.65m) and bronze in both the 250m Hurdles (37.76) and Shot (10.36m). His sister Emily Rogers hurt her knee in taking bronze in the U18 100m Hurdles (18.46), but nevertheless managed to clear 1.55m shortly afterwards for silver in the High Jump, This was, however, some way off her PB of 1.68m, which she set just the previous weekend while competing as a guest in the National League in Castleisland.

Brianán Conway was another silver medallist for St Peter's AC with a good throw in the U19 Javelin. Éamonn McManus also qualified for the All-Irelands with a 4th place finish in the U16 Shot (9.77m), and he also had a good run in the 100m.

The two other medals won by club athletes came in the inter-county 4x100m relays. Niamh Fussey was part of the Louth team which took bronze in the U17 relay, while Orlaith McMahon was a sub on the county's silver medal winning U15 team. Niamh was also 5th in the 100m Hurdles (20.97), while Orlaith competed in individual events at U14 level, performing well in the 80m, 200m (30.64) and Long Jump (3.96m).

Just missing out on All-Ireland qualification was Niamh's brother Liam Fussey, who finished 5th in the U15 Javelin (27.42m). Michael Mullen was also in good form, setting PBs in both his events in the U14 age group 20.15m for 7th in the Javelin and 7.50m for 9th in the Shot.

Nikayla Hamill had a good run to finish 7th in the U14 800m (2:40.25) and also competed well in the 80m and Long Jump. New PBs were also recorded by Heather Rogers, who threw 8.02m for 8th in the U14 Shot, and by Pádraic McGinn, who threw 7.48m in the U15 Shot.

Meanwhile Aoife Coleman (née McCarthy) continued her comeback with a bronze medal in the 1500m at the recent Dublin Senior Open Championships in Santry. She clocked 5:46.02 for the three-and-three-quarters laps of the track.

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14 June 2011

Last weekend Tom McGrane of St Peter's AC had his first outing in a senior championship competition for 17 years. Since his return to competitive athletics in 2007 he has competed regularly in masters' championships and senior open meets, but he was stepping up a notch when he contested the Shot Putt in the Ulster Senior Championships in Antrim on Saturday.

Tom performed well to finish 4th with a best throw on the day of 8.91m. Based on personal best performances going into the competition, he had been ranked 5th of the 5 competitors. He was 46cm short of his PB on Saturday, but all the other competitors were at least a metre below their own PBs. This was undoubtedly due to the unseasonal weather conditions in which the event was staged - almost incessant rainfall with the temperature in single figures.

Catherine Rogers had a great run in the Women's Mini-Marathon in Dublin on the June Bank Holiday Monday. She clocked a new personal best of 53:32 in the 10km event and finished in 861st place out of over 40,000 women. Kay Morris also had a very good run, as she crossed the line in 1370th place in a time of 56:13. Back around the middle of the pack, Angela McGinn was the third woman from the Dromiskin-based club to complete the event.

The same day as his mother was setting a PB in Dublin, Mark Rogers won the Under 16 High Jump on the second day of the Louth Community Games finals. He cleared 1.70m in Bush to secure his place on the county team for the National Community Games finals in Athlone in August.

This weekend 16 young athletes from the club are due to travel to Tullamore for the Leinster Championships for the Under 13 to 19 age groups. As well as contesting their individual events, some of them will also be representing Louth in the inter-county relays. Niamh Fussey and Mark Rogers have both been selected for the Under 17 teams, while Orlaith McMahon and Éamonn McManus are subs on the Under 15 and 17 teams respectively.

The first round of the Louth Juvenile Summer League will be staged at Meadowview in Drogheda on Tuesday 28th June, with the action getting under way at 6:30 p.m. The subsequent rounds will be held at fortnightly intervals on midweek evenings in mid-July and late July.

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7 June 2011

The athletes of St Peter's AC were in action on a number of fronts last weekend and, once again, there were a host of medal-winning and personal best performances. They were representing their schools, their club and their home areas at national, provincial and county level respectively.

Emily Rogers, competing in the finals of the Irish Schools' Championships in Tullamore, got the weekend off to a great start on Saturday morning. She leapt 1.60m for joint first place in the Intermediate (Under 17) Girls' High Jump, tying with her Greenhills schoolmate Amy McTeggart for victory. Joint third place went to Ulster athletes Anna McIlmoyle from Belfast and Bláthnaid Patton from County Donegal, both of whom cleared 1.55m.

Shortly after Emily's fine victory, her brother Mark Rogers was in action in the Junior (Under 15) Boys' High Jump. Representing St Joseph's CBS, he cleared 1.75m for joint second place, tying with Andrew Hutchinson from Belfast. Victory in this event went to the young Corkman Sam Healy with a leap of 1.85m.

Tullamore was also the venue for Sunday's Leinster Senior Championships. Frances Rogers was in great form in the Women's Discus, throwing a personal best of 22.98m for 7th place. She also managed a throw of 9.31m in her favourite event, the Shot Putt, but unfortunately had to withdraw from this event due to a wrist injury, which she had sustained earlier in the Discus.

The first day of the Louth Community Games finals was also staged on Sunday. Meadowview in Drogheda was the venue for a progamme which included all the events apart from the High Jump. Although St Peter's AC's core catchment area of Dromiskin and Darver is no longer represented in the Community Games, three of the club's athletes who live a little further afield were in action in the throwing events, and they all finished in the medals.

Lauren Finegan from Togher had a fine victory in the Under 16 Girls' Javelin, throwing in excess of 21 metres with the 600g implement. Earlier she had the honour of reading the Community Games Pledge in Irish during the Opening Ceremony.

Martin McGrane from Dundalk set a personal best in winning the Under 14 Boys' Shot Putt, throwing 10.24m with the 3.25kg implement. Heather Rogers from Togher was throwing the 3.25kg weight for the first time in the Under 14 Girls' event, and did very well to take the silver medal with a 6.19m throw.

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