Morpeth Harriers Young Athletes squad, under the brand new Team Management duo of Mark Brown (Male), and Dave Thomas (Female), made a most encouraging start to their 2017 NEYDL Track and Field campaign, by finishing an excellent second to a very strong Harrogate squad, in their opening Division 1 fixture, held at Middlesbrough Sports Village on Sunday 30th April 2017.
They only lost out for victory by a mere 23 points (subject to further scrutiny), against a Harrogate squad,
who will prove hard to beat this season, as they are boosted by an injection of good Under 17 Athletes
of both genders, because the Yorkshire squad have pulled out of the higher echelon
Under 17/Under 20 league, contained within the National competition.
Particularly outstanding on the day for Morpeth, were some of their already well established Under 17 athletes, along with a sprinkling of very competent Under 15 performances, and they were somewhat boosted by the early efforts of some of the novice Under 13 athletes, some of whom were gracing a Track and Field stage for the very first time, a factor which pleased Messrs Brown and Thomas, which will also serve to give the squad improvement over the next three fixtures, to be held later this month, at the end of June,
culminating in the final fixture in early July.
Back with Sunday’s match, and one athlete who proved to be in really outstanding form,
despite a stiff breeze, which seriously affected personal ambitions both on the Field,
and on the Track, was Morpeth Under 17 Woman Throws specialist Bobbie Griffiths.
She won all three of her competitions with consummate ease, winning her best event, the Javelin,
with her best throw of 38.60m, the Hammer with 37.15m, and the Discus with 27.88m,
all just short of her personal best, but nevertheless, considering the extremely windy conditions,
good early season pointers to further success, and considerable winning margins.
Griffiths and Morpeth were well backed up by good B string efforts by Megan Winter in the Javelin (17.28m),
and Hammer (23.01m), and Nadine Arkle, who is unable to sprint at present due to injury,
bravely stepping in to throw the Discus, producing a best of 13.06m, which won the B string competition.
Winter’s efforts meanwhile gained her second places in both instances.
Another outstanding performer in the Under 17 Women’s section was Jessica Young-Rogers,
who won the A string races of the 100m and 200m in 12.5s and 26.7s, both just outside her personal best.
Backing Jessica up for Morpeth with good B string efforts were Katie Hilton,
who won the 100m in 13.1s, and Natasha Hart, who finished second in the 200m in 32.1s.
Other good Under 17 Woman efforts came from Ella Duffield, who finished second in the 800m in 2m38.6s,
this her first club appearance, and Gracie Hufton, who also took second place in the 1500m in 5m27.7s,
again a time which was seriously affected by the windy conditions.
Morpeth tied up an excellent days work by their Under 17 Women’s squad,
by winning their 4 x 100m Relay in 53.1s.
The clubs Under 17 Men were also in very formidable form, executing for excellent track victories,
and matching that up very nicely with some excellent Field performances, particularly from their throws specialists.
Andrew Knight produced two A string victories in the Hammer and Shot Putt, with on the day efforts of 30.48m,
his first performance with the heavier implement, and 13.96m, about half a metre adrift of his best.
Knight also won the B Discus competition, with an on the day best of 29.99m,
again his first try with the slightly heavier implement.
The Discus A competition was won by Knight’s Morpeth club colleague Ruaridh Lang,
who marginally increased his personal best with a throw of 44.79m, but also broke his own league record,
which he had set at Morpeth in June 2016.
Earlier Lang had been just marginally adrift of his own personal best, when backing up
Knight’s A string win in the Shot Putt, by taking the B string with a best of 12.16m.
Morpeth gained a good Under 17 Men’s bonus result, when Daniel Melling finished
second in the A string Javelin with 25.57m, and Luke Haxell took the B string with 25.14m.
On the track, Matthew Waterfield produced two excellent A string victories in the 200m and 400m,
posting times of 23.7s and 53.0s, the former representing a brand new personal best performance.
Waterfield was well backed up by two excellent B string victories by newcomer Robbie Anderson (26.5s)
in the 200m, and Rory Leonard, who posted 56.2s in the 400m, taking around four seconds off his previous best.
Leonard also produced new figures of 2m04.2s, when winning the 800m A race,
taking off seven seconds into the bargain.
Another Morpeth Under 17 Men’s victory came from Taylor Glover,
who won the A race of the 1500m, taking around five seconds off his previous best,
with figures of 4m10.5s, and also breaking the league record set by his club colleague Scott Beattie, set in 2015.
Daniel Melling finished second in the B string in 4m35.1s, which was nearly a minute off his previous figures,
set in 2015, when he had like Glover, been an Under 15 athlete.
The clubs Under 17 Men’s 4 x 100m Relay squad finished a very close second, when posting a time of 50.0s.
Morpeth Harriers best results in the Under 15 Girls events undoubtedly came from the track,
courtesy of victories by Rhiannon Hedley, Holly Peck, and Amy Lott.
Hedley won the 800m in 2m29.8s, which was only four seconds adrift of her personal best,
which for an early season effort, holds much promise.
Backing her, and the club up extremely well was Lily Heaton,
who took the B race in 2m32.7s, which was only a couple of seconds outside her personal best.
Heaton and Hedley both also paired up in the 300m, with Heaton getting fourth
in the A string in 47.3s, and Hedley getting second in the A string with 48.2s.
Both were running this distance for the first time.
Holly Peck won the 1500m A race for Morpeth in 5m02.3s, and was well backed up
by Rebecca Bradley finishing third in the B race in 5m49.7s.
Hurdling specialist Amy Lott won the 75m Hurdles event in 12.5s,
and went on to have an industrious day by finishing fourth in the 100m
and 200m A races, posting respective times of 13.9s, and 29.5s,
the former representing a new personal best.
Rosie Winter proved to be Morpeth’s strength in the Field events, finishing second in the Shot Putt (6.81m),
and third in both the Hammer (15.94m), and Javelin (19.56m).
Morpeth finished third in the Under 15 Girls 4 x 100m Relay in 56.6s.
Ethan Stephenson’s victories in the Under 15 Boy’s High Jump and Long Jump events
were the major highlights for Morpeth in that age group.
Stephenson also did well on the track, finishing second in the 100m in 12.4s,
which was an equal clocking to the best that he had performed at the same venue last July.
However, he could feel well pleased with his winning performances in his favoured Field events,
clearing 1.65m to win the High Jump, and winning the Long Jump with 5.43m,
certainly good early season performances in tricky windy conditions.
Alfie Ward finished second in the B string Long Jump with a best of 4.34m.
Arran Kirk, on his first Young Athletes outing, did well when finishing third
in the B string Under 15 Boys 100m in 14.1s.
In the 200m, Matthew Heslop finished third in the A race in 26.9s, which was a personal best performance.
Heslop also competed in the A race of the 300m, finishing second in 43.9s, just slightly adrift of his personal best.
Morpeth had B string backing in these events by Charlie Lane,
who finished second in the 200m in 27.6s, and Jacob Clayton fourth in the 300m (51.2s).
In the Under 15 Boys 800m, Bobby Stone finished second in the A race in 2m26.2s,
and Thomas Cunningham took the B race in 2m30.6s, which was equal to the personal
best that he had run at the venue in 2015.
Jonny Kidd, running in the league for the first time for Morpeth since his recent transfer from North Shields,
clocked 4m56.5s, when finishing third in the Under 15 Boys 1500m A race,
which shaved a fraction off his personal best.
Supporting him in the B race was Dylan Davies, who finished third in 5m05.3s.
In the Under 15 Boys 80m Hurdles, Alfie Ward finished third in 15.0s,
which was a first outing over the distance for the talented Multi Event Bronze medallist.
Morpeth finished third in the Under 15 Boys 4 x 100m Relay in 53.7s, just marginally adrift of second.
The club had some encouraging results from some of their youngest athletes on show,
some of them competing in a full-scale athletics match for the very first time.
There were some good results from the Under 13 Girls, both on the track and on the field.
Sprints specialist Ellie Longstaff was in superb form, winning both the 100m
and 200m events, posting respective times of 13.3s and 28.9s.
She also received excellent B race support respectively from Alice Geoghegan,
who won the 100m B race in 14.5s, and Mia Belton, who took the 200m B race in 31.0s.
Alice also produced another good track performance to finish second in the 70m
Hurdles A race in 13.4s, before going on to win the Javelin, with a best throw of 21.21m.
Morpeth Under 13 Girl sprinters did well to win their 4 x 100m Relay in 61.6s.
In the Under 13 Boys events, Morpeth’s best achievements came in the Field events.
Oliver Geoghegan proved to be the club’s sole A string winner,
taking the Javelin event with a best throw of 22.61m.
Joseph Hudspith’s 9.55m, saw him finish as third B string.
Next best was Adam Howliston, who cleared 1.25m,
when finishing second in the High Jump.
Oliver Geoghegan finished third in the B string with a clearance of 1.10m.
On the track, Morpeth’s best Under 13 Boys performer was Fintan Ward,
who finished third in the 75m Hurdles in 16.5s, being well backed by Sam Parker,
who was second B string, posting a time of 16.6s.
Ward also finished fourth in the Shot Putt A string, with his best effort of 5.69m.
Harry Jackson produced Morpeth’s only B string win in the
Under 13 Boys events, when he putted 5.60m.
MATCH RESULTS (Subject to further scrutiny)
1st Harrogate 724pts,
2nd Morpeth 701pts,
3rd Durham 620pts,
4th New Marske 582pts,
5th Blaydon 510pts,
6th Tynedale 440pts.