Holy Cross pupils excel in schools' competition

A BREAK from club competition saw five of Riversdale Otters swimmers competing for their local school, Holy Cross College, at the Aurora Aquatic and Leisure Centre, Bangor.

The competition - Ulster Senior Schools Cup and Championships - is under the umbrella of Swim Ulster, the provincial branch of Swim Ireland.

To put things into perspective, as electronic timing was in use for the meet, the finished times and split times can be used to track against Personal Best (PBs) times. Primary PB = event finish time and secondary PB = event split at 50m.

The meet was split into two sessions with the junior grouping up first, namely Aaron Monaghan and Éimhear Duddy, school buddies from primary school to secondary school.

Both swimmers have been training very hard this season and there was no resting for this meet with the pair always striving to do their best and be the best they can be.

Aaron competed in 100m FC where he achieved a Primary PB reducing his time by nearly three seconds and a Secondary PB for his split at the 50m mark.

He also swam in the 200m IM (combination of all four swimming strokes) and claimed another massive primary PB by a massive 12.74 seconds.

Éimhear competed in both the 100m FC and 100m BRS. She has set high standards for what she wants to achieve this season in swimming.

She finished her swims in fantastic fashion. In the 100m FC she achieved a Primary PB reducing her time by 5.14 seconds, which leaves Éimhear just needing to take another one second to obtain a qualifying times for the Irish Division 2s and in 100m BRS produced a Primary PB reducing her time by nearly four seconds and a secondary PB for her split at the 50m mark.

The 100m time leaves Éimhear agonisingly just outside the Irish Division 2s by the narrowest of margins 0.44 seconds.

The smiles on the faces of both swimmers showed the pride and joy at their achievements.

The afternoon session was covering the intermediate and senior age groupin with representation by Aaron Dooher, Eva Duffy and Shea Monaghan.

With the junior swimmers doing so well in the morning session, the pressure was increasing on the three older swimmers to perform to high standards, but they said pressure is for tyres.

Aaron D who had been away from competitive swim training for three months, competed in 100m FC where he achieved a Primary PB reducing his time by 3.74 seconds and a Secondary PB for his split at the 50m mark.

He also swam in the 100m BRS and claimed another massive Primary PB by a massive 9.39 seconds and a Secondary PB for his split at the 50m mark.

Eva has started to shine since her great swims back in October and she has unleashed more drive and determination in training.

She competed in 100m FC where she achieved a Primary PB reducing her time by 3.95 seconds and a Secondary PB for her split at the 50m mark;

She also swam in the 100m BRS and claimed another massive Primary PB by a massive 9.95 seconds and a Secondary PB for her split at the 50m mark.

Shea, again the driving force within the local swimming fraternity, competed in 100m BRS achieved a Primary PB reducing his time by 2.55 seconds and a Secondary PB for his split at the 50m mark.

He also completed the energy sapping 100m Fly where he gained another Primary PBand a Secondary PB for his split at the 50m mark.

Shea reached the final of 100m Fly and came in ninth reducing his overall PB time by 7.55 seconds.

These swims are highlighting Shea’s overall ability to attack most events with great success. His attitude and determination are always carried from his training to the competition pool for each meet.

A club spokesperson said: "The proof is in the pudding. Put the hard work in at training and you will reap the benefits at competitions, as was achieved here.

"From the ten swims this has been an excellent day for Holy Cross College under the guidance of Riversdale Otters ASC.

"Swimmers are getting stronger, pushing themselves harder and it's great to see how much progress has been achieved in just over five months."

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