Students target podium finish intervarsities

NUIG is sending strong teams to this Saturday's Intervarsities Cross Country Championships at the national cross country course in Abbotstown, Dublin.

Men’s captain Andrew O Donnghaile will be targeting a top 10 finish in the 8km race, while Aisling Joyce and Niamh Hennelly are also expected to feature prominently in the ladies' event over 5km. And if NUIG are looking to be on the podium, they will also need strong runs from squad members Colm Kirke and Michelle Maher.

Also on Saturday in County Galway, the seventh edition of the Kinvara Rock and Road 10k and half marathon events take place.

The 10k starts at 12 noon with the half marathon at 12.10pm taking in the picturesque south Galway town and its surrounds.

On Sunday many of Galway’s top Masters conclude their indoor athletic season this weekend with the hotly contested national championships which take place in the Athlone IT Arena.

There are high hopes of success with Kathryn Casserly and Brian O'Connor of GCH aiming to medal over 3000 metres, as are Eamon Hornibrook and Jim Phelan over 1500.

Mary Barrett of Loughrea AC, and Martin McEvilly of GCH will be looking to secure multiple medals in their categories

Connacht Indoor Championships

A host of Galway athletes were gold winners at the Connacht Indoor Track and Field Championships in Athlone at the weekend.

The senior ladies' 1500m proved one of the highlights of the weekend, with Aisling Joyce of NUIG and Claremorris eventually taking the honours. Cocking a solid 4.43, she edged a tough battle with Kathryn Casserly of GCH, who finished in 4.47 in an encouraging early season run for both.

A huge entry of more than 900 athletes competed in the two-day championsips which saw Eoin Lyons of GCH run 2.05 to win the senior men’s 800m. JP Carty of Sligo AC secured gold in the men's 3000m and 1500m. Stephen Casserly of Castlegar and Brian Bruton of GCH produced strong runs, and Peter O'Sullivan of Craughwell AC was the second senior in 4.22.

Nicole King of GCH cruised to victory in the senior ladies' 200m, as did Majella Loftus in the senior 60m sprint, while Mary Barrett of Loughrea won the senior ladies' hurdles and the shot putt. Craughwell AC ladies took Senior ladies relay gold

Tuam AC's new signing Shane O'Rourke produced a fine first outing for the club, leaping 6.06 metres to take gold in the senior long jump and also secured medals in the 60m hurdles and 60m sprint. Also in the field, Paul Armstrong of Craughwell took the senior men’s high jump title. Cliff Jennings of GCH won the pole vault, Brendan Staunton was a clear winner in the senior men’s shot, and Henrique Nkolovata of GCH was second in the long jump and won the triple jump title.

At Juvenile level, GCH had a hugely successful day. Jack Dempsey and Seren O’Toole were the stars, winning triple gold medals in their age groups. Dempsey won the U19 60m, 200m and helped teammates Sean Kilmartin, Kacper Poniatowski, and Darren Costello to gold in the U19 4 X 200m relay. O'Toole won the 200m, 60m hurdles and the long jump at U16 level.

Kilconieron five mile

Andrew Nevin of Mullingar Harriers took the honours at the ninth edition of the Kilconieron five-mile road race in wintry conditions on Sunday. Nevin clocked 28.05 for victory, ahead of Fergal Walsh of Athenry AC in second in 28.14, and Gary Scully of Nenagh Olympic third. First woman home was Tammie Corrigan of Athenry AC in 34.59, with Aisling McDonnell second and Katie Gorman of Craughwell AC third.

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