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Wednesday 22 November 2017

Athletics: Flying Ogunlewe in the Santry fast lane

No catching King's whizkid on day of drama

Seye Ogunlewe of King's Hospital proved the star at the second day of the Leinster Schools Track and Field Championships in Santry last Saturday.

The lanky Nigerian student not only blitzed the opposition in both the senior 100m and 100m races, but also helped King's Hospital to victory in the senior 4 x 100m relay.

At intermediate level, Patrick O'Connor of Coláiste Rachrann set a new record of 22.07 secs in the 200m and also won the 100m.

The day didn't lack drama. In the inter girls' 800m, Claire Earls from Dominican Wicklow had set the pace from the start, but Ellie Hartnett of Loreto Dalkey was only waiting her moment. She stormed into the lead off the final bend and although Earls made a valiant effort to hold her off, Hartnett won in 2 mins 22 secs.

Even more dramatic was the boys' senior 800m. Cathal Daly of DLS Wicklow and Knockbeg's Brian Kelly came into the finishing straight locked together. Within a few paces of the line, Daly tumbled head first to the ground followed swiftly by Kelly.

Since the heads of both lads had technically crossed the line, it left the judges with something of a dilemma. In the end victory went to Daly. An eagerly awaited re-match will come at the All-Ireland Schools in Tullamore.

Winning the inter girls' 800m from pillar to post was Iseult O'Donnell of Santa Sabina in 2:18. Behind her, Aoife Keyes of Our Lady's Terenure won a tremendous battle for second place, just edging out Emily Milner of Maynooth Post Primary. Eoin Murphy of Newbridge won the inter boys' race in 2:00, with Castleknock's Fintan Doherty a close second.

Continuing his rapid improvement in the inter high jump was Thema Nkoala of Oatlands. Nkoala had finished a fighting second at the Easter Leinsters, where he narrowly lost to Blackrock's Neil Gorey in an enthralling competition. On Saturday, the result was reversed, with Nkoala soaring over 1.85m for a decisive win.

Conor Daly of Knockbeg finished second after jumping 1.75, with Gorey third, also on 1.75. It was a second gold for the young Oatlands student, who had won the U16 long jump a few days earlier.

Making it a long and triple-jump double was Eamonn Fahey of King's Hospital. His winning long jump of 6.99 put him comfortably clear of Simon Doyle from CBS Carlow, whose best was 6.67. In the triple jump, he was pushed harder and with a best of 12.83, only beat Belvedere's Adesola Anyaybenan by seven centimetres.

Chase

Delighted to win the senior 100m was Catherina McManus of St Dominic's Cabra. On Wednesday, McManus had finished second in the hurdles, but this time there was no stopping her. In the chase for the line, she beat Steff Creaner from the Institute of Education, clocking a time of 12.43.

Creaner had earlier won the 100m in 25.46 beating high-jump specialist Mary Kate Lanigan of Loreto Kilkenny. Third in both races was Kilkenny College's Louise Holmes.

Over the longer distance, Fiona McKenna of Loreto Dalkey had a good win in the senior 3000m with a respectable time of 10:41. Three seconds behind was Hannah Dalton from Our Lady's Terenure.

Stephen Attride of Knockbeg proved the class of the field in the boys' 3000m, winning in 8:49, despite the searing heat. A valiant second was Kevin Dooney (CBC Monkstown) with John Murphy of CBC Kilkenny third.

An even more decisive winner of the inter 1500m in 3:58 was Shane Fitzsimons of Rockfortbridge. Timmy Moriarty from St Paul's was second.

Also taking place last weekend were Munster, Ulster and Connacht championships. Perhaps the most dramatic result came in Ulster where Ciara Mageean of Assumption Ballynahinch was out on her own in the senior girls' 800m winning in 2:07.47. She also won the 1500m in 4:37.7.

All the qualifiers from the four provinces will meet again in Tullamore on Saturday, June 5 for the All-Ireland Schools Championships. It promises to be one of the most thrilling ever.

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