Sunderland school's sports teams celebrate a winning treble

Sunderland's Academy 360's football and netball teams are celebrating a winning treble in an unprecedented season of sporting success for the school.
Academy 360 youngsters celebrate netball success.Academy 360 youngsters celebrate netball success.
Academy 360 youngsters celebrate netball success.

The Year 11 netball team bagged a superb double – securing the Sunderland Schools League title and the Sunderland Schools Netball Association City Tournament crown.

To cap off a fantastic sporting season at Academy 360, the Year 11 boys’ football team has been crowned joint Under 16 Sunderland Schools League Champions with Castle View School.

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It’s the first time an Academy 360 football team has won a league title and marks an incredible transformation for the Year 11 team, which, little over a year ago, couldn’t win a game.

Both the netball and football teams were awarded their league trophies at a special event, a fitting reward for sporting excellence at a time when they are also revising for exams.

The netball team of Leah Young, Tia Tones, Katie Burrell, Michaela Kelly, Ellie Dixon, Lisa Dorwood and Tanisha Chapman are well versed in lifting silverware together.

It’s the third year on the bounce they’ve won the inter-schools tournament while they successfully defended the league title they won 12 months earlier.

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Girls’ PE teacher Lisa Richardson guided her young protégés to success. Michaela Kelly was voted player of the knockout tournament, while captain and goal attack Ellie Dixon was judged player of the league season.

Ellie, said: “I love it, we all work as a team, talk to each other all the time and know each other’s tactics. It feels great to win two trophies, we’re very proud.”

For the boys, the league title is the culmination of months of hard work to turn around their form which saw them struggling to record a league win or even score a goal.

PE teacher Dan McKay, who coaches them, said: “We looked back in the history books to the 1999-2000 season and the school has never won a league title.

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“I started working with the lads when they started Year 10, when they had never won a game.

“Just a little bit of structure for them has changed it around. It’s all down to the lads listening and wanting to do well.

“It’s been great watching them grow as young men, footballers and leaders over the past two years.

“They’re enjoying their football. Their hard work has paid off and the league title is the reward they deserve.”