Match reports for this week highlight the improvement our players, especially our junior players, have shown during the season. With 1 week to go before the finals, or before the end of the season for our younger teams, the standard of play is impressive, and provides expectations of great things to come.
Midweek Junior Program
The Midweek Junior match this week shows that even after only three weeks, these players are developing skills and learning the strategies of great hockey. The ‘Bibs’ team were in control this week, but not through lack of trying by the ‘Non-bibs’ players. Great running and ball control with some nice spins by Gil and Kenna. Welcome to Hayden whose dribbling skills were fantastic, and some lovely through passes set up his team mates for attack. Great tackling by Amy, Seb and Tejai was matched by great passing from Archie and Sam. Rory and Cameron were always there to back up their team mates and hassle for possession of the ball.
Newtown Spirit v Kardinia Kookaburras
A full-strength Spirit met Kardinia Kookaburras in a tough tussle at King Lloyd Reserve in the latest round of under-8 competition. With nine players aside, the match was at times congested down the centre of the ground as everyone wanted a piece of the action. Max, at right half, and centre forward Nate combined well, while Charlie roamed dangerously on the left, showing his usual great vision as he drove the ball forward through a wall of Kookaburras.
Max, Ruben at left half, Meyah and goalie Matilda had to work hard to stop the Kookaburras squad in full flight. Max starred in a stand-out passage of play, with a great individual run from the centre line. He evaded several opponents to take a shot a goal, which just missed to the left. Coach Kellie urged her team at half time to “look sideways” when taking a free to evaluate options out wide on the wings and open up play. Her message: The field is bigger than you think so use the sidelines.
Spirit, after a position reshuffle, started the second half in a determined fashion. Avah, in goals, capably blocked a fast run by the Kookaburras while centre half Phoebe and left mid Cate battled solidly to frustrate the opposition’s attack and feed the ball to Spirit’s wings. Matilda showcased her skills at centre forward with an exciting run into attack. Despite Kardinia Kookaburras scoring twice in the second half, Spirit players kept Coach Kellie’s directives in mind and tried to utilise their wings more often. They also tackled strongly, created some quality linking play and put in a real effort to mark their opposition players. With a total of 18 players on the field all match, the congested game also brought home how important it is to play to your position. Coach Kellie awarded a determined Matilda the Best Team Player award for the game for doing a fabulous job and always having a go both in defence and attack.
Newtown Strikers vs Newtown Rebels
This was a game which showed off the high standard of skills possessed by these young members of the Club. Great defence in front of goal for Strikers from Chris, with some nice well considered free passes out to forwards, Jakai and Eliza in great position. The teams shared Amelia – one half each, and she and Amy tackled well, working with Alex, Daniel and Emma to move the ball forward. Best Team Player for Strikers was Chris – really looking to see where his next pass would go.
Newtown Rebels vs Newtown Strikers
The Rebels played Newtown Strikers on Saturday morning. Firstly, thanks go to Amelia who volunteered to bolster the Rebels’ numbers as we were a player short. This sort of volunteering from the kids is really impressive. This week the Rebels were trying to concentrate on sticking to positions. Overall the team did a good job of it. Freddie was prominent early in attack and then went back to provide others with an opportunity. Likewise Eoin, who can run and run did the same, spending the first half as keeper and then having only a very short time in attack. This is great sharing from these kids.
The Rebels played a really good game of Minkey hockey. Grace works well on her positioning, Alanah’s run from the backline was fantastic and Mai’s passes set up a number of goals. Sadie spent time up forward and did well to get right into the thick of the action in front of goal. Alanah won the Best Team Player award for her constant run and passing. One week to go for the Rebels. It has been great to watch the kids grow into the game over the year.
Newtown Spirit vs Newtown Rebels 3-1
Newtown Spirit came up against against Newtown Rebels this week. It was an absolutely fantastic game for our whole team. Our new players are really finding their feet and are getting more comfortable on the field each week. The kids are starting to work well with other and are looking for each other much more. This week we lent out a couple of players to the other 2 Newtown teams but we still had 2 subs which always makes a difference.
This week the team were able to easily bring the ball from the back line to the forward line through the inners and the wings. We seemed to stay out of the middle a lot more than in previous weeks. Mia managed to put the ball into the goals only to have it answered by the opposition towards the end of the half. Despite this, everyone was very animated at half time and with a reshuffle of some positions we went into the second half very confident. Oliver played a great game as an inner, Harry held a great high wing position and was again unlucky not to score a goal. Liam also played one of his best games of the season. Thomas in the back line played very strongly, Edie also played a very determined and strong game. John played really well on the wing, giving Oliver great options. Phoenix and Maggie played an integral part in the ball being brought forward to our attacking half, Mia and Angus played well together from the half line, bringing the ball well into the circle which resulted in a couple of short corners and 2 very strong goals coming from Angus all within the last 5 or so minutes. Ely in goals had a very quiet second half which I am sure he was thankful for. Xander forgot his glasses today but still managed to play a great game as did Jem. Kellie was so very proud of everyone’s effort today and suggested that we play the same way next week. Final result 3-1. Best Team Players were Angus and Mia. This match certainly tested our strengths and showed how tough a game can be.
Newtown Rebels vs Newtown Spirit 1-3
The Rebels showed some very strong efforts and again great passing from our forward line Flynn, Harry, Locke, Kiah and Declan, who were all proving they can make a difference. Everyone played in their positions well and there were some excellent ball skills being displayed. The ball was worked very well from the half line out to the inners and wings which resulted in the ball being forward and inside the circle often. It did take a little time before we managed to score our first goal in the first half by Locke, but again this wasn’t letting our team down.
Since we were a few players short in this match we gained two very strong players both Angus and Nate who displayed some of their great talents to help support the Rebel team. Angus did some fantastic long shots back to the centre towards Flynn, Harry and Basyl, who all displayed their great dribbling skills to try to take a punt in gaining another g0al for the Team. However this was short lived for Harry who was sidelined with an injury. Charlotte once again did a great job as our goal keeper for the second time and showed she’s willing to do some great tackling.
During the second half of the match, there was huge improvement from Bailey in the defence area who was determined to stop the Newtown Spirit team from gaining in any further goals, and with some great passing to Declan and Nate. Both Claire and Taylah displayed some excellent passing skills to block our opponents to gain further entry to their goal circles. However as the time wound down towards the end of the second half we seemed to tire out and a lot of crowding occurred leaving Newtown Spirit an opening to score another goal. In the end with a score of 3 goals to 1, this effort won’t disappoint our team in coming back stronger for our last game for the winter season next week. Best Team Player Award went to Claire – for showing massive improvement – she maintained her position well and always looked to pass the ball to player in better goal scoring position resulting in our lone goal scored by Locke. A big thank-you to Angus S and Nate for filling in for our Team.
Newtown Strikers v Torquay Tornadoes 5-1
A fantastic game for the Strikers this week. Our previous clash with Torquay produced our only loss (3-4) for the season, so this was always going to be a tough game. The Strikers came out firing though, scoring four goals in the first half. The second half was more even, but the defence, with Nathan in goals and Brandon, Samuel, Max (thanks for filling in Max!) and Angus, did a superb effort in restricting Torquay to one goal, with Harry producing another goal for the Strikers at the other end. Great run through the middle and into the forward line from Harry, Olivia, Imogen, Amity, Amelia and Jonah, creating plenty of opportunities. Goal scorers were Harry (3) and Olivia (2). Three Best Team Players this week; to Nathan for his work in goals, Angus for his brilliant defence and his ability to move the ball forward with great skill and to Amelia for an exceptional game in the midfield, feeding the ball beautifully through to the attack.
Newtown Spirit vs Bellarine 2 0-1
A great effort by the team in their last match for the season! In trying conditions and with only 11 players it was a fighting effort against Bellarine 2, and only a very late goal denied them a worthy draw. Plenty of outstanding attacks and some great defensive plays were the highlights. The team should be really proud of how far they have come this season particularly given how young the majority were. Keep up the great efforts!
Newtown Strikers vs Kardinia 3-1
The last round of the regular season before finals proved to be a tough hit out for the Strikers. The Strikers were concentrating on a flat structure across the back line as a platform to the spread the ball wide and then attack up the wings. They implemented well, however they were struggling to find their range once within shooting distance. Kardinia were counter attacking when possession was turned over and it was proving to be a very even contest. The score at the end of the first half was 1:1 after an intercept goal from Miles and a return goal from Kardinia following a short corner.
The majority of possession in the second half was with the Strikers and despite being in and around the D for extended periods they were still off target. There was extensive passing in search of options, which was encouraging to see ahead of the finals. Kardinia eventually wilted under the pressure and the Strikers went ahead courtesy of a goal from Jamie following a short corner. Jamie was in the action again soon after with a piercing run from a free hit. A well placed pass to Miles led to the third and final goal. The Strikers defence held solid during the second half and Kardinia had no real scoring opportunities, leaving the final score 3:1 to the Strikers. Great game by all and good luck for the finals.
Newtown Strikers v Golden Plains 6-0
Well done team!! What a great victory against Golden Plains. The score of 8 to 1 at the pointy end of the season is great to see, and a true result of solid attendance at training, focus on thinking and game play, not to forget heeding Marcus’ “10 percent” calls – our guys pushing that bit extra (10% over and above) saw Strikers determination quash any opposition Golden Plains could offer. Luke swung from backline into the forward line with absolute ease, and had a chance to show his hand in attack. Hudson at 3 goals is set to ‘work, rest and play’ this week after a fast and skilful game. Miles and Lachie at two each, and Tom with his effortless run from the centre was a pleasure to watch. All game we saw Chloe showing really strong skills and stamina, and Rachel cleverly popping up in exactly the right place at goal to ensure anything loose would be taken care of. Erin and Jen were completely committed to the game and stuck like glue to Golden Plains, while Hailey and Byron kept up their speed, consistency and cracking passes to make a clear difference to the game. Josh played a nice game in goals and yet again Will put in a fantastic game and is doing so well it’s hard to believe it’s his first year in the game! We are pushing to hear Marcus shout ‘supercalifragilistic’ this week – and everyone is doing so well let’s hope we hear it Saturday at 10.15am!!!
Newtown Spirit vs Saints 6-0
Newtown Spirit U15 played the Saints on Sunday 26th with a resounding 6 nil win. Strong play in the forward line combined with accurate passes and set up plays saw goals going to Corey, Jonah and 2 a piece to Monique and Tom. The team continues to build it’s strength on the field in the lead up to the finals.
Newtown Strikers v Saints 0-2
Once again we came up against an opposition side that was much stronger than when we had previously played against them. The Saints turned up with a very strong team and we knew early in the game that it would be tough when the Saints scored the first goal. We worked hard, defended strongly and had numerous chances to score but unfortunately we were unable to convert. And so it was our first loss of the season. There were several things for us to learn about our game plan which we will work on. It was good to have a tough game like this close to finals to remind us that not only do we need to work hard but we also need to play smart hockey if we want to win at finals time.
Division 1 Men
Newtown Falcons vs Saints Black 2-2
Division 1 Women
Newtown Strikers v Newtown Falcons 1-2
Terrific game for the final clash between Strikers and Falcons. Falcons managed to score twice, but we pegged one back via Eliza toward the end. Some great run through the middle from Kelly O and up forward from Marion, in particular, with great support out wide from Amanda and Peta. This provided us with plenty of short corner and other scoring opportunities, but we struggled to convert. Great defence from Jen in goals and from Jacqui, Jess, Kate and Kellie B, which restricted the Falcons’ scoring opportunities and produced some great saves. Thanks to Peta and Kellie B for filling in for us; although Kellie B may be regretting her generosity after receiving a nasty blow to the head from a short corner with only a minute left on the clock – thanks Kellie and we all hope you’re feeling better soon.
Division 2 Men
Newtown Strikers vs Golden Plains 3-2
In a high intensity game we were lucky not to be scored against in the first 10 minutes, thanks to some masterful saves by Martin in goals. Moving forward, we found our rhythm and were able to score two goals through a short corner conversion and another from a text book Rodan spin pass to one of our attackers resulting in a goal. Unfortunately, Golden Plains were able to get 2 goals past our defence, but after a 3rd field goal we were able to get away with a win.
Newtown Spirit vs Torquay Tornadoes 1-4
Division 2 Women
Newtown Spirit – Bye
Newtown Rebels vs Saints 1-4
A disappointing result in this important game for Rebels. The team began well with some nice movement on the left and well co-ordinated passing between Chloe and Erin S, moving the ball forward. Great defence by Ainsley and Meg kept Saints out for a while but when Saints were able to score a relatively easy goal they continued to put pressure on our defence. Excellent use of space and ball control by Nicola and Erin W and great hassling by Jenny created some attacks, and great following up by Bron saw us put one on the scoreboard. Confusion reigned with some of the position changes and uncertain marking created opportunities for Saints. Tracey, Jan and Sharon battled hard and Colleen enjoyed her brief run on the forward line before we pulled her back to add strength to the defence.