Young Lancaster side impressive despite defeats

Lancaster in action at Salt Ayre.
Lancaster in action at Salt Ayre.
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Lancaster finished third in the British Water Polo League’s Super Fives after the final weekend of action in Guildford.

A young city side lost 17-12 to Portobello on Saturday before a 16-4 reverse against Manchester the following day ended their slim hopes of a 13th national title.

The Salt Ayre-based team were missing their two top scorers and three other key players due to injuries and work commitments at the start of the weekend.

It meant it was always going to be a tough ask first up against the current British Championship title holders.

Lancaster did well to hold the physical Portobello side to just a five-point margin of victory however, showing excellent fitness and stamina with just two replacements to call on from the bench.

Portobello led 8-4 at the break but the city side battled in the second half, scoring a further eight goals to the Scottish side’s nine.

On Sunday Lancaster faced near rivals Manchester who were looking to become national champions for the first time with victory.

London 2012 Olympian and top scorer Alex Parsonage arrived in time for the game but couldn’t prevent Manchester racing into a 10-1 half-time lead.

Lancaster kept fighting in the second period with Decland Ellwood, Decland Thompson and Lewis Peach getting on the scoresheet.

Despite two defeats, one major positive for the city side was the average age of the squad being just 20, which bodes well for next season.

One of those promising players was 15-year-old Ripley St Thomas pupil Owain Llewellyn who played his first senior British Water Polo League games in goal keeping at bay several of the country’s top scorers and some Olympians.

The club would like to thank sponsors AJM painting and Decorating, Water Polo City, Kendal Mint Cake, P & JW joinery, Detail Devil and Hayes and Parkinson Funeral Directors.