We have 2 matches left before the end of this hockey season, and are hoping to have at least 6 teams in the finals. Regardless of finishing positions on the ladder, all teams have put in some fantastic efforts this year, and this week was no exception.
Under 8 Mixed
Newtown Spirit vs Newtown Strikers
The cold and wet weather could not dampen our Spirit!!
Team Spirit warmed to the occasion with many advances toward goal but the floodgates never opened. Transition between attack and defence continues to be our focus and improvement is seen each week. Lachy was awarded Best Team Player with Tommy receiving the Subway Award for his fast break dribbling towards goal.
Newtown Strikers vs Newtown Spirit
The U8 Newtown Strikers played Newtown Spirit this week in a well contested game. Joseph, Lucy and Josien started the game in attack, with Audrey, Hunter and Charlie backing them up in defence. A decisive early play from Hunter saw him stop the ball mid field, and making a strong pass he quickly turned defence into attack. Audrey and Charlie were also very handy in defence, with a number of good tackles.
Josien was also making some good tackles, and had a long with ball run up the field to in front of goal. Lucy and Joseph kept moving to get to good positions and at times combined to get the ball forward. The whole team were making some good passes to team mates in good positions, with one of the best passages of play being a series of passes that culminated in a goal. Hunter started off the play with a pass to Joseph, who sent the ball quickly to a well-positioned Josien, allowing her to score the goal.
At half time coach Maggie praised the team for their good passing and reminded them to make sure there is only one Striker at the ball.
The great play from Strikers continued in the second half with their defensive efforts standing out in particular: Hunter made some great stops and tackles in defence; Lucy, Josien and Audrey combined well to get ball out of defence; Joseph showed determination, running hard back into defence when needed; And both Charlie and Josien at different times stopped the ball right on the goal line. A highlight in attack was a goal from Josien from a long way out after Audrey brought the ball up out of defence.
The awards this week went to Hunter and Joseph.
Newtown Rebels vs Kardinia
U/8 Rebels played Kardinia on a very cold and wet Saturday. Maybe the chill was keeping everyone on their toes because it was a very lively performance. Isaac made a couple of really good chases and tackles. Albie made some great passes, and Manny worked really hard up and down the ground. Jake and Kasey did a good job stopping our opponents’ attacks. There was some good calling, and the team is getting better at knowing and sticking to positions.
Well played Rebels!
Under 10 Mixed
Newtown Strikers v Torquay 0-1
It was a top of the table clash with two strong teams competing for top spot. It was a game that didn’t disappoint keeping everyone on edge. Torquay maintained pressure on our defence, but this allowed Strikers to be dangerous on the counter attack.
It was an epic game, but Torquay applied sustained pressure on the Strikers valiant defence, which was finally broken with a goal in the last 10 minutes of the game. Isabella in goal made several saves and clearing kicks which kept Strikers in the game and Charles at sweeper was a rock in the last line of defence.
Awards this week went to Charles Donovan (Best Team Player) and Isabella Bradbury (Subway).
Newtown Spirit vs Geelong College 5-0 (forfeit)
Under 12 Mixed
Newtown Rebels vs Golden Plains 0-4
Another great game from Rebels this week who took on the ladder leaders and matched them in every aspect except the scoreboard. Everyone had a great game and the 0-4 scoreline didn’t reflect the closeness of general play. Rebels had a number of chances to score but once again we couldn’t quite find the back of the net.
Toby stepped into goals for this game and did a fantastic job, keeping out numerous shots from the Golden Plains side. Jai provided some great run from full back in an unusual role for him, and Eliza and Perri seemed to be everywhere down back demonstrating great tenacity with their tackling and constantly feeding the ball out to good options. Isla continues to dazzle with her growing stick skills and Amelia provided a game highlight with a great run up the field only narrowly missing the goals.
The team has shown great improvement in the back half of this hockey season with some great passing and tackling on display. General play has become more attacking, often starting with a strong releasing pass from the backline utilising the available spaces out wide and some improved running to provide forward options.
MVP this week was Perri, special mentions for Eliza & Toby.
Newtown Spirit vs Geelong Jaguars 1-4
In near freezing conditions with a wild wind and scouring rain, Newtown Spirit played one of their best matches to date. Yes, they were defeated but, the score line was much closer than past matches. We were somewhat reduced in numbers so we must thank the 4 subs from U12 Rebels and Strikers: Kye, Ruby, Amelia and Charlie – who incidentally snatched our one goal in a show of skill and speed. I’m not sure if it was the cold, the pressure of needing to do our very best due to other teams helping us out but every team member’s game improved. Hamish S in goals was lively kicking many attempts well clear and the backs were sweeping them away. Much more play was seen in our goals then previous heavy defensive games and our forwards finally got a chance to shine! Which is much more than can be said of the sun!
Newtown Strikers Bye
Under 14 Mixed
Newtown Spirit vs Newtown Strikers 3-2
On Saturday Spirit came up against Newtown Strikers. The match was an important one for both teams in respect of the upcoming finals. Early play was congested with Strikers marking Spirit players closely, crowding our possession but running well into space on theirs. They were rewarded by a goal only 2 minutes in.
A converted penalty shot by Harry B put the score at 1 all and sparked a bit more run in the Spirit forwards. As the half progressed, our defenders gave Strikers fewer scoring opportunities and our transition from defense to offense improved. With 5 minutes left in the half, in a very crowded D, Harry B found the back of the net to take the score to 2 – 1. An encore with 3 minutes left on the clock saw Harry chalk up his third and made the half time score 3–1.
Strikers began the second half passing well and catching us flat footed, quickly resulting in a short corner, and then another. Both teams tested opposing defenders repeatedly, penetrating deep into offense and threatening to score. Spirit started moving the ball out wide well with Isabel instigating a number of passages of play that featured quick disposals and accurate passing. A Spirit short corner saw Harry B bounce a hot ball off the top bar. Strikers answered with a fast break into open space catching our defenders off guard and narrowing Spirits lead to 3 – 2. The tension ratcheted up when Strikers worked hard to force a short corner with one minute left on the clock. Spirit defended the corner well to scrape in with a win.
Congratulations to both teams on a close, well-played, tough match.
Special thanks goes out to AJ who stepped out of his coaching role to Umpire in the first half. A sporting sacrifice that was much appreciated by the whole Spirit team.
Newtown Strikers vs Newtown Spirit 2-3
It was an exciting match between Strikers and Spirit on Saturday. Within the first few minutes Strikers had scored through a great goal by Max. Sam was terrific in defence and Charlie was solid in stopping shots from short corners that would have been goals. Overall it was a strong start to the game.
However Spirit was not deterred, shooting three goals and at half time were up 3-1. In the second half a determined Strikers came back with yet another goal by Max. Goalkeeper Ollie, had some great saves and combined with a strong backline, prevented Spirit from scoring for the rest of the game. Maggie, Tom and Oskar were consistent with their efforts and all team members are to be commended for staying focussed and playing well.
Under 17 Mixed
Newtown Spirit vs Torquay 1-4
Another cold day for hockey with the Under 17 Spirit taking on Torquay. As Newtown Spirit were missing two of its essential players Max and Bailey, a tense first half saw replacement goalie, Oliver defend well which prevented a well drilled Torquay scoring only one goal for the first half. However, Newtown showed strong determination and were persistent in aiming for several goal opportunities but unfortunately were unsuccessful. Lots of strong passing and tackling was evident from Newtown who were able to hold Torquay to 1-Nil.
Newtown became more determined in the second half in the midfield from Tom, Harley and Caleb with some great possessions and tackling opportunities. Even our fill in Matilda gave us her best shot, and was close to scoring a goal opportunity from the half circle for Newtown. With seconds from the end of the game Tom managed to pass a strong ball to Jarret who scored a great 1st goal for Newtown. Unfortunately Torquay were able to score another 3 goals during the second half which saw the end score of 1-4. A great effort by Newtown Spirit who played a strong game.
Thank you to Oliver M, Matilda and Liam for filling in.
Congratulations to Tom on reaching 150 games and Matilda on reaching 50 games.
Newtown Strikers vs Geelong Jaguars 0-10
In challenging conditions, Strikers were pressed from the outset with Geelong Jaguars confident and able to control the ball with accuracy and speed. Jaguars played their usual attacking game and had multiple attempts at goal, however, Strikers were able to defend strongly and keep the score to 3:0 to Jaguars in the first half. At half time coach Phil’s comments focused on the need for strong marking up on our opposition players, running hard to gain possession and accurate passing.
The second half was challenging for Strikers with the Jaguars finding their stride and providing continual attack. Goals came in quick succession and although Strikers put in an admirable challenge, their efforts were not rewarded as Jaguars seemed to be able to create passing options and quickly set up scoring opportunities. The final result was 10:0 to the Jaguars. While this seems a disappointing outcome after last weeks strong game, there were many positives to reflect upon for the team to learn and grow. Thanks to Mason for supporting the team and providing a substitute.
Division 1 Women
Newtown Falcons vs Torquay 1-1
1-1 tie with Torquay. It was so exciting to strike first blood and get on the score board. We were unfortunate not to get at least another one. There were some great linkages in play, which was nice to see after working on it in practice.
As we began to tire our opposition coverage wavered, but the defense held strong only allowing 1 goal in. This was a tremendous team effort to get the tie against the ladder leaders. The team included some tired junior players having played their third game for the weekend. Well done everyone.
Division 2 Women
Newtown Spirit vs Geelong Jaguars 6-1
Newtown Spirit approached this game with some confidence despite a couple of disappointing matches in recent weeks. Geelong got on the score board first though with a strong shot on a short corner. However, Spirit regrouped and with a proactive defence meeting the opposition well up the field blunted much of the Geelong attack. Improved marking of opposition players when Geelong did reach their attacking zone did not really allow Geelong to pose a great threat, and Spirit were able to send the ball forward to our advantage. Great work in the defence and midfield by Hannah, Amelia, Andie and Tracey with Kylie positioning herself well to pick off anyone who happened to make it past the early barriers.
With the score 2-1 at half time, Spirit came out for the second half with renewed enthusiasm, and it showed in the great teamwork, positioning and passing which resulted in plenty of attack. Lauren picked off many Geelong attacks and used team mates around her very effectively. Calm unflustered play and control of the ball by players in the goal circle saw 4 more goals scored for Spirit in the second half, including a couple from short corner variations. Geelong had a number of short corners and shots at goal in the second half but were not able to score. Goals to Katie, Peta (2), Hannah, Georgie and Kate.
Newtown Strikers vs Corio 4-2
Corio is always a challenging team to play; both physically and psychologically. They are quite a bit older than our team but what they lack in speed they make up for in cunning. The first half was played very evenly and at quite a highly skilled level. It looked like two teams trying to prove a point before finals. We scored the first 2 goals however a lapse in concentration allowed Corio to level the scores quickly.
After we scored our third goal in the second half, Corio rallied and they ramped up the pressure. The pressure applied was strong but unfortunately for Corio’s sake this back-fired on them as they struggled to control their aggression with a number of their players being carded. Meanwhile, the Strikers remained calm whilst chaos seemed to be happening all around us – a great testament to the level headed attitude of all of our players, both younger and older.
Newtown Spirit vs Torquay 1 1-6