Shimna Stars Special Olympics Club will celebrate its 10th Anniversary during 2017.
From a club perspective the year could not have got off to a better start when on Saturday past five players from the ladies team were permitted to line out with their counterparts from Antrim Borough Special Olympics Club to compete in the Ulster League.
Up until this the ladies participated in the annual skills event hosted by Special Olympics Ulster. Despite not having played as a team prior to the game both sets of players soon formed a strong bond and over the two games they showed great skill, determination and ability.
Playing the first game against the more experienced Northwest SOC was a steep learning curve for the amalgamated team. Although beaten by Northwest SOC in this game the team really got together and went on to win game two against Clones, also gaining a bonus point victory.
Meanwhile over on court 1 the Shimna male team were in action against Ards Wizards SOC and Coleraine Cougars SOC. Although slow to start Shimna Stars gradually increased the pace against Ards Wizards and eased to victory and also gain a bonus point when they outscored Ards in the 2nd and 4th quarters to win the game 27 pts to 10pts.
Game two proved to be more difficult and Shimna Stars had to pull out all the stops to shake off a determined Coleraine Cougars SOC side. Shimna in arrears after the 1st qtr came back to win the next 2 quarters with the final quarter being a stalemate after both teams had exerted maximum effort. Final score Coleraine Cougars SOC 10 – Shimna Stars 20.
The recently returned from injury, David McCrum showed his prowess from the free throw line scoring 5 out of 6 while his teammates Patrick Hennessy and Niall Rogan chipped in with some great scores on the fast break. Overall this was a great team performance and emphasises the benefit of regular squad training.
The Shimna Stars players and management will be pleased with the enjoyment, skills, teamwork and fitness demonstrated by both the Shimna Stars SOC teams and they can now look forward to the next league and skills day in April.
Off the playing court nine members from Shimna Stars SOC undertook a First Aid training course organised by Aquarius Training. Many thanks to course tutor Tony Sutcliffe from Aquarius Training who presented Certificates in Emergency First Aid to club members: Jack Lenny, Robert Campbell, Laurence McAlinden, Kay Speedy, Sarah McEvoy and John Morgan, Steven McKibbin, Jordan McKibbin and Jon A McVeigh.
Shimna Stars training resumes on Tuesday 28th February @ 6.30pm Shimna Integrated College.