St Columba's and St Bernard's take honours at Barrow schools table tennis comp
By Mail Sportsdesk
12 October 2017 9:50AM
TEAMS from St Columba’s and St Bernard’s produced impressive displays to emerge victorious in the Dave Southam schools’ table tennis competition.
Eight schools were represented, as a senior competition was included alongside the junior event for the first time.
The tournament serves as an opener for the school season, and is held each year in memory of the popular traffic warden and table tennis player.
Southam spent time in local schools helping youngsters develop their interest in the fast action sport.
In the junior competition, St Columba’s provided two teams and both began the competition strongly, with the A-team of Sol Arribas-Garthwaite and Seth Woodend beating Askam Village School duo Mischa Turner and Max Bowman.
The St Columba’s B-team of Max Broadfoot and Jai Pedley proved too strong for a combined team of Dane Ghyll’s Sophie Ackred and Sacred Heart’s Alex Hackett.
Despite the defeat, Ackred acquitted herself well as the youngest player in the tournament. She beat Pedley 11-7, 6-11, 12-10, finishing with a sizzling backhand service return straight down the line.
She then took Broadfoot to a deciding set, but was eventually beaten 7-11, 11-7, 7-11.
St Columba’s B followed up by overcoming Askam, with Pedley winning both of his games.
Broadfoot dropped a set against Turner, and then lost a close game against Bowman, 11-9, 14-12.
St Columba’s A’s win against Dane Ghyll/Sacred Heart set up a mouth-watering finale between the two teams from the Walney school.
The third-placed play-off resulted in a draw between Askam and Dane Ghyll/Sacred Heart.
Turner and Bowman each won once for Askam. The impressive Ackred won both her matches, including a nail-biting 12-19, 11-13, 11-6 victory over Cumbria under-11 girls champion Turner.
Hackett was unlucky to lose 13-15, 10-12 to the older Bowman.
The opening match of the final saw Arribas-Garthwaite attacking fiercely with his forehand, while Pedley was content to top-spin return from off the table
The tactic worked well for Pedley, giving him an 11-8, 11-9 win.
Woodend levelled the match by beating Broadfoot in straight sets, but was narrowly beaten by Pedley, 11-9, 12-10.
This left Arribas-Garthwaite and Broadfoot to battle it out for the title.
It was even in the first two sets, 11-9, 9-11, before Broadfoot won the decider 11-6 to give his team the victory.
In the senior section, Kirkby Stephen drew all three of their matches with Jake Haygarth, Cumbria’s top under-13s player, winning all of his games.
Dowdales were represented by Jack Graham, who took Chloe Irvine and Connor McLoughlin to deciding sets, as well as winning against Lara Haygarth.
The results meant Dowdales and Kirkby Stephen finished joint-third.
The final saw St Bernard’s brothers Connor and Adam McLoughlin take on a joint team of Chloe Irvine, of St Bernard’s, and Amelia Langhorn, from Walney School.
Langhorn started with a dominant 11-1 opening set against Connor McLoughlin, but immediately found herself behind in the next, which McLoughlin went on to win 11-4.
The decider was in the balance at deuce, but it was McLoughlin who held his nerve to win 12-10.
Both Adam and Connor McLoughlin took close wins against Irvine, before Langhorn took to the table to play Adam.
Again the Walney youngster won the first set, but Adam began to use his serves to create more attacking opportunities.
He produced an impressive finish to win the following sets 11-6, 11-6, and St. Bernard’s were crowned champions of the inaugural senior event.
Seth Woodend, 83 per cent; Jai Pedley, 83 per cent; Sol Arribas-Garthwaite, 67 per cent; Max Broadfoot, 67 per cent; Sophie Ackred, 50 per cent.
Jake Haygarth, 100 per cent; Adam McLoughlin, 83 per cent; Connor McLoughlin, 83 per cent; Sol Arribas-Garthwaite, 67 per cent; Amelia Langhorn, 50 per cent.