Northsea “B” Win Promotion at the First Attempt

A stunning conclusion to the final gala of the 2013 arena league saw Portsmouth Northsea clinch the Division Two West Championship and promotion to Division One West.    
Northsea went into the gala knowing that a top 2 finish would secure promotion to division one in their first ever Arena league campaign. It was clear by the way in which they started that they had no intention on settling for 2nd place and that they were determined to go up as champions.

With four wins from the opening 8 relays Northsea set the pace early on, alongside fellow promotion hopefuls Guildford City as they were both tied for first place on 63 points after 10 races. Wins from Dominic Johnson (Boys U13 Breaststroke) and Joe Hendry (Boys U15 Backstroke) helped to open up a 3 point lead over Guildford after 18 events.

As the gala approached the mid-way stage, it was clear that Portsmouth and Guildford were going to take the top 2 places as the opened up a 27 point lead over 3rd place Alton but the race for 1st place and the title of division Two West champions was well and truly hotting up. Northsea extended their lead to 9 points with three successive wins from Jacky Knight (Girls U15 Butterfly), Aaron Lloyd (Boys U15 Butterfly) & Megan Owen (Ladies Backstroke) and a further win from Max Hewitt in the men’s breaststroke.

With the atmosphere reaching fever pitch the battle continued as Guildford applied the pressure with wins of their own to close the gap to 4 points going into the final 8 relay races. Guildford turned things around with victory in the first 2 relays and second place in the third to open up a 4 point lead with just 5 races remaining.

However, Northsea still had plenty of fight in them as they produced a stunning finish to the evening. Back to back victories in both the Boys and Girls U13 freestyle relays  and a 3rd place finish in the Boys U15 Medley relay saw Northsea edge back in front with just 2 events to go. In a thrilling finale to a wonderful night of competition Portsmouth Northsea took victory in both the men’s & woman’s freestyle relays and secured victory on the night by 5 points and along with it, the title of Division Two west Champions.

 A Stunning achievement in their debut season produced by hard work and a fantastic sense of team spirit. Congratulations to all swimmers, well done!