POOLE claimed Dorset bragging rights after edging Swim Bournemouth to achieve their best result in the Southern Junior League.

They scored four points more than their local rivals to finish second to Plymouth Leander, who defended the title they won at the first attempt last year.

Only the winners of the Bristol final qualify to meet other south of England champions in the national semi-final, which in turn offers a ticket to the national final in November.

It is the fourth year running that Poole have improved their final placing after coming eighth, seventh and third in the past three years. They were also third in 2010.

Junior coach Jan Hutchings said: “This was one of the best team performances I’ve witnessed in my time at the club.

“Our times in 31 events were faster than in the previous round and we achieved 15 personal best times, which was unexpected so soon after the summer break.”

Poole’s individual winners were Lara Johnston-Trow in the 10yrs 50m backstroke and 50m butterfly, Aimee Quarrie in the 11/u 50m backstroke and Mae Phillips in the 9yrs 50m breaststroke.

Amy Brown and Drew McGregor were both double winners for Swim Bournemouth, who were champions three years running from 2012 to 2014.

Brown won the 12yrs 50m breaststroke and backstroke, McGregor the boys’ 12yrs breaststroke and butterfly.

Amy’s sister Ellie won the 10yrs 50m breaststroke while Max Looker took the 50m butterfly in the same age group for boys.

Poole and Swim Bournemouth each won four relays.

Bournemouth coach Sam Woodward said: “It’s hard finishing third after being seeded first going into the final but it gives us motivation to work harder next year and get back to where we want to be.

“Our swimmers swam with pride and passion but unfortunately things didn’t go our way on the night.”

Result: 1 Plymouth Leander 222, 2 Poole 201, 3 Swim Bournemouth A 197, 4 SX3A (Swindon) 154, 5 Severnside Tritons 129, 6 Swindon Dolphin 114.

Seagulls’ 12/u boys produced a clean sweep of their events as the Christchurch club got the best of a five-way scrap for second place in the second-tier final at Dorchester.

Keynsham won by 34 points but just 17 covered the other five, including Swim Bournemouth B, who were fourth.

Kai Weeks led Seagulls’ all-conquering 12/u boys’ team with wins in the 50m backstroke and butterfly.

Dan Staples won the freestyle and Ben Nealon the breaststroke and the team also won both relays.

The 11/u boys produced Seagulls’ other five wins through Isaac Ellis in the 50m freestyle and butterfly, Lawrence Elliot in the breaststroke and the medley and freestyle relay teams.

Leo Riggs gave Bournemouth B their only win in the 9yrs 50m freestyle.

Result: 1 Keynsham 203, 2 Seagulls 169, 3 Trowbridge 164, 4 Swim Bournemouth B 160, 5 Bristol Penguins 158, 6 West Dorset 152.