Battling HUCKNALL FALCON made the long journey to Shropshire worthwhile when the new National Arena Swimming League season kicked off.
For they finished a highly creditable fifth in the First Round of Division Three North in the West Midlands section of the league, despite missing some key swimmers.
Head coach Ian Melvin beamed: “It was an absolutely brilliant night for us. There was very good team morale and support.
“We were without our open boys’ team, but the spirit and performances of those who stepped in were excellent, especially Adam Webber and Jai Raison.
“Finishing fifth was a good result. A big thankyou to all the supporters who travelled and helped.”
The division comprises 23 teams, who are split into four galas for each of the three rounds. Falcon sit 18th in the table after the opening round, which was held at Market Drayton Swimming Complex.
Four victories were secured by the locals, including two by the 13-and-under girls’ relay team of Maje Felten, Emma Hutson, Ellie-May Gunn and Elise Connor in the 4X50m medley and the 4X50m freestyle.
Felten also landed the 13-and-under girls’ 100m backstroke, while Sam Murden won the 15-and-under boys’ 100m backstroke.
Murden was also second in the 15-and-under boys’ 100m freestyle, as was George Webster in the 11-and-under boys’ 50m breaststroke.
Personal-best times were clocked by Murden, Felten (two), Webster, Curtis Gregory, Bradley Gregory, Kyle Raison, Archie Penlington (two), Eve Tuckwood, Sophie Hutson, Adam Webber (two) and Benjamin Davies.
RESULT -- Radford 214 points, Ripley Rascals 209, Market Harborough 188, Burntwood 168, FALCON 142, Dove Valley 118.