DOMINATION: Edgecumbe College Athletics Academy champions, from left to right, Samantha Burr, Mykahla Watson, Etienne Otto, Ben McBeth, Lucas McBeth and Connor Melville. Photo Troy Baker D8924-17

IN the past two weeks, Edgecumbe College students have brought home 49 medals for sporting excellence.

Students have earned medals in multiple disciplines including athletics and badminton.

“We are extremely proud of our students,” said deputy principal Rene Otto.

“To earn 49 medals in the space of two weeks is absolutely amazing.”

Six students from the college’s Athletics Academy travelled to Darwin to compete in the Northern Territory Athletics Championship.

Otto said it was the academy’s second visit to Darwin and the seventh overseas athletics trip in five years.

“We had a goal of winning 15 medals and ended up winning 21, which exceeded all our expectations,” he said.

As well as winning medals, both Mykahla Watson and Lucas McBeth broke Northern Territory athletics records.

Mykahla broke the under-18 women’s hammer throw record and Lucas broke the under-14 men’s hammer throw. However, because the two are not Northern Territory athletes they cannot claim the records.

Sam Burr, 17, said the team trained all through winter to be ready for the games.

“We were out in the cold, the wind and the wet all winter training,” she said.

“Usually we would take a break over winter, so it was different and hard to be training in those conditions. The experience of competing in Darwin was really cool. We had previously competed in Sydney, but I found the Darwin competition to be more friendly and welcoming.”

Edgecumbe College was the only New Zealand school to compete in the championship.
Adding to the Athletic Academy’s success, the school’s senior badminton team also cleaned up at their competition.

Badminton coach Paul Speedy said the sport had been growing in popularity at the school for several years.

Four of the school’s five senior teams made it through to and competed at the Bay of Plenty Secondary Schools Senior Badminton Championships held in Tauranga.

“It was a great day full of fierce competition and all four teams played well,” said Speedy.

Two players, Sophie Warner, 17, and Brandon Powell, 17, said they really enjoyed the experience of competing.

Sophie said she had been playing for five years and had really high expectations heading into the competition, which she was glad to meet.

“It was interesting to see the mood of the team before the competition. Some of the players were nervous and some were excited, it was a good experience,” said Brandon.

Otto said the school was also pleasantly surprised by their students’ success in their various competitions.

“We were expecting some to do well, but not for all of them to do as well as they did,” he said.

“They have exceeded all our expectations and we are extremely proud of every one of them.”

CHAMPIONS: Four of Edgecumbe College’s five senior badminton teams have qualified for the Bay of Plenty Secondary School championships. D8924-11


Northern Territory Athletics Championship

Samantha Burr (under 20 women); gold in hammer throw and javelin; silver in shot put, discus, 4x100m relays and triple jump; bronze in 200m relay and long jump
Mykahla Watson (under 18 women); gold in hammer throw; silver in shot put, discus and 4x100m relays.
Ben McBeth (under 18 men); gold in hammer throw and 110m relays; silver in shot put; bronze in discus.
Lucas McBeth (under 14 men); gold in shot put and hammer throw; bronze in 90m hurdles.
Etienne Otto (under 16 men); gold in hammer throw.
Connor Melville (under 14 men); silver in hammer throw.

Bay of Plenty Secondary Schools Senior Badminton Championships

1st place girls division two: Jana Longney, Kellie Renata, Cassidy Spillman, Sophie Warner.
1st place girls division three: Te Tai Ata Hona, Ocheyann Akuhata, Kasidy Hohepa.
2nd place boys division three: Kaya Hodson, Bon Magee, Ben Burr, Brandon Powell .
3rd place boys division two: Kaleb Muggeridge, Jason Chhlour.