Eagles Cram so much into star-studded evening ...

Whitby's North Riding Eagles at their star-studded dinner
Whitby's North Riding Eagles at their star-studded dinner

North Riding Eagles U18 team got to mix with the stars at a special Christmas meal held to celebrate local sporting talent.

With famous sporting heroes all around the room, such as ex-Manchester United and Middlesbrough footballer Garr Pallister and IBF Bantamweight World Champion Stuart Hall, the Whitby girls were in esteemed company.

Then sporting legend Steve Cram MBE spent some time discussing volleyball with the girls. The former world athletics champion (1983), British Olympian and medallist at the Seoul, Los Angeles and Moscow games, certainly knew his volleyball.

Eagles coach Anthony Laffan said: “The 1985 1,500m, 2,000m and mile recordbreaker know as the Jarrow Arrow was a true gentleman.

“What he had to say about how universities would be chasing after students who could play high level volleyball was spot on as Eagles players are discovering.”

The special meal came on the back of another weekend win for The North Riding team who had hosted Leeds in a rerun of last month’s all-Yorkshire clash.

This time The Eagles had home advantage playing at Whitby Leisure Centre, while a reinforced Leeds travelled north seeking revenge after recently losing at home 3-0 to North Riding.

Big city club Leeds had gone out and reinforced their squad in an effort to improve results.

Leeds already have two star hitters in the German and Dutch players Edina Pape and Johanna Schonofer and by bringing in Kelley Farrar and Polish setter Denisa Dzulova, they were hoping to get more out of their big hitters.

The derby with North Riding was seen as a key game for Leeds to start off a winning run. This brought a sense of spice to the game especially as the home side had stood down adult players and cut the squad to mainly U18s.

Feeling that they were now safe from relegation North Riding wanted to see what the younger players could achieve on their own at this level. What unfolded was a Christmas surprise for the home fans.

The Whitby youngsters played with speed and flair to run out 3-0 winners again in what turned out to be their easiest win of the season.

Completing a derby double win over Leeds leaves North Riding Eagles now sitting third in national league division two. The next match is at home to Black Country, on January 4 at Whitby Leisure Centre, 11.30am start.

Jetprint player of the match: Eleanor James – lovely to watch such a young player come of age. Her fast attack play was unstoppable.