On a very wet and cold day in Blackpool at Stanley Park, St Cecilia’s Longridge’s Under 14 netball team qualified for the regional finals of the national schools’ cup after finishing in the top two in the Lancashire county round.
The Ribble Valley school enjoyed group stage wins against St Michael’s, Chorley, 10-3, Bacup and Rawtenstall Grammar, 10-0, Baines School Poulton, 8-2, Archbishop Temple, 11-2 and Clitheroe Royal Grammar School 7-2.
The team, all from Year 9 at St Cecilia’s, didn’t lose a group game to finish top of the table to play Stonyhurst College, beating them 10-8 in a hard-fought semi-final.
The winners of the two semi-finals got through to represent Lancashire at the regional round of the national schools’ competition.
Head of PE at St Cecilia’s, Miss Sarah Bethwaite said: “The sheer hard work and dedication of the team has taken us this far and will take us the rest of the way too.
“As one of the smallest schools in Lancashire, the team have done exceptionally well to beat teams from much bigger schools.
“We look forward to meeting the opposition at regional level.”
This is the first time in many years that a schools’ netball team from the Ribble Valley or Preston areas have progressed through to the regional finals.