South High in fast lane at NSW All Schools
ATHLETICS: For the second year in a row South Grafton High School will be represented by pocket-rocket Nathalie Avery at the Australian All Schools Championships after the school exceeded expectations on the NSW All Schools stage recently.
With a contingent of four budding local athletes, South High came away from the championships at Homebush with two silver medals and had all representatives reach the finals in their chosen fields.
Twin sisters and field specialists Megan and Erica Tillman once again performed in the jumping arena with Erica jumping 11.31m - only 0.12 off her personal best - in the triple-jump to clinch the silver medal.
Erica also finished seventh in high jump and long jump while sister Megan was cruelly brought down with a ligament injury as she was contesting the high jump finals.
Sprint queen Natasha Rudder qualified for and competed in the Open girls 100m and 200m finals as the sprinter continues to improve her speed on track.
While Avery missed the final of the girls 13-years 200m sprint by 0.01 seconds, she blazed through the field of the 100m sprint finishing in a time of 12.60 seconds to clinch the silver medal.
Due to the qualification process, Avery's silver medal finish qualified her for the event at the Australian All School championships while Tillman will miss out for another year.
Avery will also be part of the NSW 4 x 100m relay team at the championships in Canberra from December 2-4.
School sport coordinator Matt McKee said the results at the championships as well as finishes at the recent CHS championships has the school excited about the athletics prospects.
"Nathalie achieved that similar level last year and she once again impressed in her performance," McKee said.
"The Tillman twins and Natasha have achieved performances beyond expectations.
"Erica broke our school record for the triple jump there and definitely continues to improve each time she competes.
"Megan hurt herself in the high jump and when she did she was coming fourth so who knows where she might have finished.
"Natasha has gotten faster as she has gotten older and it was a pretty fair effort to make the finals of Opens."
McKee said there were a fair few Under 13s students make CHS State level which bodes well for the school's future on the track.
"It is exciting the potential we have in this school on the athletics field," he said.
"The fact we have four girls in particular competing at the top level is fantastic.
"And now there is a lot more potential in the school waiting in the wings ready to make it to the same levels in the coming years."
Avery will travel in early December to Canberra for the Australian All Schools Championships.