Sportshall success for Chichester youngsters

There were some fine performances in the second fixture in the Sussex Indoor Sportshall League at Horsham.

Chichester scored more than 200 points for third place in the boys’ event while the girls had to be content with fourth place fielding a weakened squad from their first match.

Once again Thomas Ackerman spearheaded the boys’ effort in the under-15 age group with convincing wins in both the four-lap race and the standing triple jump with and impressive 7.21m best jump.

He was joined by Alex Hill, making his first appearance for the club, in the eight-lap paarlauf relay.

Hill had earlier shown promise in the four-lap and did not disappoint as he and Ackerman proved too strong for their rivals to win by nearly two seconds.

Running with the under-15s, Jamie Johnson sharpened up his winter sprinting as a guest with quick times in both the two-lap and four-lap races.

An equally-impressive pairing for the under-13s were Collins Alfred and James Austin, who gained near-maximum points in the two-lap sprint with Alfred winning the A string in an impressive 22.5 seconds and the repeating the result in the vertical jump with another first and second between them.

To round off the day they ran winners Horsham, to a close second place in the eight-lap paarlauf relay.

In the same age group Peter Thomas continued his impressive outdoor form in the shot to record a personal best of 9.47m for second place, just over half a metre behind the winner who posted an impressive ten metres plus mark.

In his fourth event of the day, Alfred showed his qualities as an all-rounder with an 8.40m best to easily win the B string.

On the track, Casey Keates once again led the squad in the four-lap and six-lap ably supported by younger brother Brodie in the four-lap and Zac Hurst in the longer event.

The latter two have at least another year in the age group and showed great promise against older competitors.

Alex Austin and Michael Ackerman picked up good points in the two-lap and long jump for the under-11s with Callum Strowger slotting in for the speed bounce and the three being joined by Brodie Keates for a fine third place in the relay.

In the girls’ section, the club was missing the top point scorer from the first match, Nathalie Godden.

But Alex Fryday was well supported by Kezzia Turner and Demelza Peake to keep Chichester in the hunt for a good team position.

The latter two kept the score rolling in the two-lap and shot putt while Fryday put in a good showing in the four-lap then recorded an impressive 6.33m in a high-class triple jump competition where the Crawley competitor broke the league record with a superb 7m jump, an impressive distance indoors with no run-up allowed in Sportshall athletics.

For the under-13s, Amy Brown and Sophie-Ann Haig scored two impressive second places in the two-lap race and repeated the result in the vertical jump.

Beth Rogers had a useful run in the six-lap while Zoe Nunn filled in for the field events before joining the other three for a brave relay effort at the end of the match despite not feeling 100 per cent.

In the final age group, the under-11 girls, Chichester recorded their only maximum points score of the day with Alyssa White and Emily Moorley gaining a double first in the speed bounce.

They also performed well in both standing long jump and the two-lap race and were joined by non-scorer Mia Brown, who had the distinction of being Chichester’s youngest competitor in this competition and besting several older athletes in the process.

The club are looking forward to the third fixture of the season on January 23, when with a full squad will hope to match league leaders Crawley in the boys and Horsham in the girls.

PHIL BAKER