Causeway Archers certainly keep going from strength to strength with one success after another coming the way of the local club.
Hot on the heels of their success when they won the Senior Sports Team Award at the new Causeway Coast and Glens Council Sports Awards.
Prior to that the Club won four different awards at the Ballymoney Regional Sports Awards.
Not a club to sit back and rest on their laurels, Causeway Archers competed last weekend at the the All Ireland Indoor Championships. With entrants in the Senior and Junior sections, all archers shot well over the two days of intense competition, returning home with several All Ireland titles in the bag.
Day one saw young Sean Martin, a pupil at St Killian’s College, winning the Youth section of the All-Ireland Championships and being crowned Champion in the Under 13 category.
Day two continued to provide great excitement and tension for the adults and juniors as Stewart-Lee MacFadyen, from Ballymoney, shot brilliantly to be crowned All-Ireland Champion for the third Year in a row.
Stewart-Lee’s section, the Cadet Male (under 18) section, is hugely competitive, with a few of the matches being hotly contested. The final was a close affair with Stewart-Lee storming to a 5-1 lead and only needing one more point to win. However, his opponent had other thoughts and fought back to 5-5 forcing a one arrow shoot off. Both arrows hit the centre with a 10 point score each but Stewart-Lee’s arrow was 2 millimetres closer to the centre giving him the victory. What a massive achievement for the young 16 year old who also won the British Outdoor Championships last year.
Not to be outdone, the girls also got in on the title lifting action. Laura McGahey became a double All Ireland Champion when she won both the Cadet Girls (under 18) event and the Adult Ladies section.
Laura shot 60 arrows to be ranked in the elimination round where she went head-to-head in match-play against her opponents.
She fought her way through the early rounds with some close matches before coming up against a former member of Causeway who now shoots for a club in the Republic of Ireland in the final.
Both girls put on a great show which was watched by all the clubs on the sidelines. Laura won the cadet final 6-4 and then repeated the outcome in the Senior Ladies final again winning 6-4. This was a brilliant result for the young 17 year old archer who now heads to the British Indoor Championships in a couple of weeks.
The last two years have been a fantastic period of development for the Causeway Archers with juniors and seniors winning All Ireland and British titles. The club’s disabled section has also gone from strength to strength with John Nicholl, the deaf blind archer, enjoying a brilliant year.