An indication of how Penrith Canoe Club has continually grown, since starting up in 2012, is the number of teams it now has and the level they play. The weekend of 4th & 5th July saw 3 teams head off to Hull for the annual Joy Davis Memorial International Canoe Polo Tournament.
The A team, consisting Jack Dunn, Hilary Clarke, Katie Farley, Tim Mather, Robin Helsby and Caitlin Fox entered the Div 2 league as they were promoted to National Div 2 starting next season.
The first match against locals, Hull Mariners was closely fought, just losing 2-3 with goals from Robin Helsby, as well as a disallowed goal. Next up were Tees Tigers. Another closely fought match, which unfortunately, they also lost 2-3 with goals from Katie Farley and an inopportune swim from Hilary Clarke! Dragon, eventual winners of the league were next.
A high scoring game ended 7-4 to Dragon, but the possession and play didn’t reflect the score. Penrith Goals came from Katie, Robin and Jack Dunn. Last match on Saturday was against Castle and at last it all came together. They went onto the water as England scored against Sweden in the football, making everyone positive and Penrith played hard, worked well together and won 5-3, with goals from Robin, Katie, Jack and Caitlin Fox. Commitment spilled over a little with Robin also collecting a green card for a boat tackle. Sunday saw 2 more group matches.
The first against Jesters, was a disappointing draw, as Penrith were winning 2-0 at half time with goals from Katie, but gave away a goal then a penalty with 30 seconds to go, to even the match. However, they played well as a team and went into the last match against local rivals Red Rose, feeling confident. Working well togather, passing well and taking their opportunities, they won 4-2 with goals from Robin, Katie & Caitlin.
They finished 4th out of 8 in their group and played Hull Kingston C in the playoff. A well fought match against a physically bigger and more experienced side, saw Penrith win 2-0 with goals from Caitlin & Jack. Penrith A therefore finished 7th out of 16 in Div 2.
Penrith B consisted mostly the new youth team for next season and entered Div 3. The team was Luke Farley, Morven Fox, James Metcalfe, Joe Wyldes, Sam Garnet and John Cox. A good start against Bridgend saw them win 1-0, with Morven Fox scoring the goal. Next up were a British Armed forces team who were physically much stronger the Penrith and beat them 7-0.
However, in the 3rd match, Penrith bounced back against a University of London side, beating them 4-0 with goals from Morven, Luke Farley and Joe Wyldes. Feeling confident they also beat FOA 5-3 with goals from Luke, Morven & Joe.
The first match on Sunday at 8am, was against another big canoe polo club, Viking from Derby. Obviously too early in the morning for Penrith, as they lost to 0-2. Last of the group games was against Scotia Kelpies from Scotland, who they drew against, in a fiercely fought match ending 1-1.
The goal was from Luke and Morven received a green card for a boat tackle, given by our own Penrith Ref! They also finished their group in 4th place, and met Cherwell C in the playoff, beating them convincingly, 4-0 with goals from Morven & Joe. The B team aslo therefore came 7th out of 16 in their division.
Penrith C had a few players drop out at the last minute and therefore had last minute replacements playing in their first tournament. The team consisted Dan Farley, Alistair Brock, Rhys Kernan and Brodie Coultard, with Martin, Jen and Rachel from Red Rose helping out.
They were also entered in Div 3, which was based on the original team, but they would have been much better in Div 4, as they lost all their matches and came bottom of the division. However, the team were surprisingly upbeat, enjoying the event and felt they improved as the weekend progressed. Dan Farley scored against old rivals Trentham and Brocky managed a swim, so all in all a great weekend. Everyone is now looking forward to the London Open Tournament in 2 weeks time.