Katie stars for Sussex

A Bexhill High School student played the starring role as her county won the team prize in a national athletics competition.

Katie Garland was the top performer as Sussex were the first team in the intermediate girls’ class at the 25th English Schools’ Athletic Association Combined Events Championships.

The Hastings Athletic Club talent contributed 4,146 points to a Sussex total of 12,335 which was nearly 400 more than the 11,954 amassed by a strong South Yorkshire team in second place.

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Bexhill-based Garland was eighth in the individual standings after day one when she ran the 80m hurdles in 12.11, leapt 1.59m in the high jump, put the shot 7.29m and clocked 26.85 for the 200m.

She moved up two places on day two at Bedford International Stadium to finish sixth after leaping 5.05m in the long jump, throwing the javelin 23.81m and clocking 2:35.38s for the concluding 800m.

The other three Sussex girls also improved on their overnight placings. Holly Turner (Cardinal Newman) moved up from 14th to eighth, Beth Crocker from 16th to 11th and Imogen Marshall (Durrington) from 26th to 24th.

Fifteen-year-old Garland, Crocker and Marshall will still be young enough to compete in the same age group next year so there’s every chance of further success in 2013.