PRESTATYN Sports’ first season operating at Lock Stock Welsh Alliance Division One level can be seen as a huge success.

The club have shown they belong at third tier level with a series of outstanding performances throughout the season, which has continued the growth of a squad that has enjoyed a phenomenal rise through the Welsh pyramid system.

It was not going to be as easy or successful in terms of a consistent run of results as it has been in previous years for the club, but they coped with adversity incredibly well and this leaves them with plenty of positives heading into a summer of transition.

Joint manager Mark Hughes has announced he is stepping down due to increasing family and work commitments, and he leaves behind a lasting legacy having been one of the key figures behind the club’s initial inception.

To finish seventh is a testament to the team spirit and work ethic that has been the cornerstone of their success in recent years, and although their away form has been largely disappointing, it has been more than compensated by their strong set of results at their Gronant base.

It has always been a difficult place for opposing teams to visit and this has proved to be the case again this time around, winning nine of their 14 fixtures on home soil during what has been a feast or famine campaign at times.

There are a host of players that can all be proud of their individual contributions throughout the season, with skipper Shane Middleman once again leading by example to further enhance his overall influence within the squad.

The likes of Kris Owen, Ian Dunn, Tom McDougall and Dean Hyland have filled the goal-scoring void left by the prolific Ian Griffiths admirably throughout the season, with the performances of goalkeeper Ryan Jones also giving them a valuable presence at the other end of the field.

James Harper’s ability on the ball has also played a significant part during the season, and it will be interesting to see how Sports respond next term without Hughes within the set-up.

Their committee moved quickly to strengthen their coaching staff with the appointment of Sion Williams in Hughes’ place, who also has a long-running association with the club which should avoid any complications in terms of a change in philosophy.

Another notable addition is Russ Jones as first team coach, who enjoyed a fine playing career with Prestatyn Town and Sports and will bring a great deal to the role.

This is a club that has been on the up since forming, and although it might plateau now they have reached the third tier, the fact they are playing and competing well in this division whilst still in their relative infancy is an achievement in itself.