Athletes Exceed At Interbranch
Mid North and Lower North Coast finished their Interbranch campaigns in 9th and 11th spot respectively. The weekend’s performance from both branches was an insight into what the future holds for their surf sport teams.
Port Macquarie’s athletes were the stand out performers on the sand for the Mid North Coast with Jaidyn Rossiter winning both the beach sprint and flags in the Under 12’s and Keely Sinclair finishing second in the Under 15 Flags.
The format changes to this year’s championships have been a blessing for the Mid North Coast team with a host of drafted athletes coming into the side from other branches in NSW.
Corey Fletcher who came first in the Open Male Board was drafted from Terrigal SLSC on the Central Coast. Assistant Manager, John Sargent, believes the drafting process is great for the smaller branches like the Mid North Coast as they had seven athletes come across.
“These championships have gone fantastically and we’ve performed well. The drafting has been the best thing for us as we’ve been able to get some older athletes who have been able to show their experience to the younger members,” said John Sargent.
“The drafted athletes have performed sensationally and our kids have done well, especially on the sand. The benefit of having the drafted athletes is not just for competing but also having them part of the team off the beach.”
Lower North Coast’s effort over the weekend should not go unnoticed as their team was made up of only home grown athletes. Despite finishing in last place, the green and gold is slowly rebuilding after a host of older athletes have moved away in recent seasons.
Cormac O’Byrne from Black Head was the sole podium finished for the branch, coming third in the Under 17 Flags. While fellow club mates Julia Brown (Under 13’s) and Jordan Connolly (Opens) both finished sixth in the Beach Sprint.
Head Coach, Kevin Boag, was excited to have the event in his home branch but believes the team lacked some team feeling.
“Having the Championships in our own Branch make it a whole lot easier. The only thing is we suffer with having team atmosphere due to the kids not getting on the bus and feeling like they’re part of a team,” said Kevin Boag.
The Lower North Coast team elected against the new drafting process this year but will be looking to bring athletes into the team for next year’s event at The Lakes SLSC on the Central Coast.
“We decided to go against the draft because we wanted to focus on building our own team. We’ll look at the draft next year because we like the changes, they’re really positive for a branch like us,” Kevin Boag added.
2015 Interbranch Championships Final Pointscore
Sydney Northern Beaches – 1242
Sydney - 1172
Central Coast – 1106
Hunter – 1014
Far North Coast – 884
Illawarra – 809
North Coast – 626
South Coast – 595
Mid North Coast – 526
Far South Coast – 438
Lower North Coast - 191
Photo: Jaidyn Rossiter at the 2015 Interbranch Championships
Tue 15 Dec 2015