With 3 weeks of the 2016 hockey season left, there were some fantastic matches this week.
Team Red vs Team Orange was a fun match with all players showing some excellent skills and team strategies. Team Red got on the scoreboard first with good passing between Sam, Sam and Jai and good interception skills to wrest possession from the opposition. Alex and Amy moved to good position in space to create an avenue to goals and good use of back passes maintained possession before sending the ball into attack again. Great running by Ella and her long reach gave her an advantage and saw her gain possession many times, creating an immediate threat to opposition defenders.
Newtown Rebels vs College Green
A beautiful sunny morning welcomed the Rebels and College green players and supporters. It was a hard fought competition with the Rebels players successfully defending their goals for most of the match. Hannah took on the role of goal keeper for the whole game, standing her ground in front of goals showing great composure when under pressure from a very strong College offense. Georgie, Hana, Scarlett, Mai and a very determined Pollyanna all worked tirelessly to keep the College players at bay with numerous intercepts and passes. The Rebels found some space in the second half which resulted in some great passages of play between teammates. Colleen encouraged the girls to move the ball forward and keep on their opponents. This is something we can work on for the last few games of the season. All-in-all a SUPER effort against a very tough opposition. Well done Rebels! Hannah received the Best Team Player award for her amazing effort in goals.
Newtown Spirit vs Kardinia Kangaroos
The family factor came to the fore during Spirit’s enthusiastic display against a keen Kardinia Kangaroos in Under 8 competition at Lloyd Reserve on Saturday. Siblings Meyah, Avah and Summah showed that sister acts can be box office hits on the hockey field too as they drove their team forward with great passing during the game. The trio took control on the left hand side on several occasions during the first half, propelling the ball towards goal at a cracking pace. And they didn’t stop. Because those sisters don’t. They just keep going until the final whistle.
And neither did their teammates. Charlotte, who started at centre, showed her determination throughout the game, blocking and tackling the opposition at every chance while Nate launched straight into attack like an arrow. Ruben, who started at full back before swapping forward, was among several Spirit players to taste success with a goal, and Lucy added pace at right wing, providing a valuable option out wide for her teammates.
At half time Coach Kellie praised her charges, but cautioned them against diving on the ball en masse. If one person goes for the ball, she said, it created more space for the others to set up passing options. She asked for more calling when players were in good position and set them the task of `at least three passes’ between teammates before shooting for goal. The team didn’t slow down in the second half, with players putting lots of pressure on the opposition’s defence. Charlotte, who refused to give up, almost snared a goal and Meyah showed her skills, getting down low with her tackles and owning the half back position on the left.
While the Spirit players looked like they were enjoying themselves, it was also a great game to watch from the sidelines. The players took their time to look for good passing options and combined well as a team. With everyone putting in such a solid effort, it was hard to pick a single best team player. So Coach Kellie didn’t, selecting Charlotte and Meyah for their valuable contribution to the game.
At first glance, the game included a great example of a player staying in position. One of the players on the far side of the field received great praise for staying out wide on the wing and helping open up play during Spirit’s match on Saturday. The girl was in a perfect position to gather a pass from her teammates and make a speedy run down the wing. And then it was realised after a few minutes the child was still in exactly the same position, feet not moving, no matter where the ball was. Turns out she was waiting patiently, but just over the sideline, for her mum to return from a mercy dash home for a forgotten mouthguard so she could take to the field and the action!
Newtown Strikers vs Kardinia 3
Firstly we wish to congratulate all players on how far they come this year. Mrs Alex opened our scoring early in the first quarter. Amy followed up with an unsuccessful shot on goals but followed up with a lovely assist to Ruby. Mr Alex sent the ball wide for some lovely direct shots and covered a lot of the field. Amelia read the play well and capitalised on a small gap and pushed the ball through for a goal. We saw multiple goals from Mrs Alex, Ruby and Isla. Eliza showed some fantastic defensive play with great tackling.
Great work everyone, we are very proud of how far you have come this season. Remember to keep sticks on the ground. Mr Alex was awarded Best Team Player for his improved skills this year.
Newtown Raiders vs Golden Plains 2
In a repeat of last week’s game, Newtown Raiders showed how much they have improved as a team, but could not match the strength of the Golden Plains players. Oscar and Eamon defended the goal well, taking up great position to face the oncoming attack. Isabel’s focus and determination to help her team is superb and with great ball control skills, she was able to move the ball into attack. Cate and Eliza-May set up some great passages of play along the right wing, getting the ball into attack and setting up shots at goal – narrowly missing the target on a number of occasions. Charlotte worked well with her team mates, keeping control of the ball until she could see a good passing option. With stick on the ground, Jesse was able to gain possession and help his team to move into attack.
Best Team Player award this week went to Isabel. Some work this week to focus on the play at all times and to mark opposition players will lead to a great game.
Under 11 North
Newtown Rebels vs Bellarine Thunder 6-2
Newtown Rebels played host to Bellarine Thunder at Lloyd Reserve on Saturday. The team was really excited to get onto the pitch after their team photo. Sam, Brandon and Olivia were excellent in attack in the first half, with some great passing resulting in a few great chances and goals to Sam mid-way through the half, and to Brandon a few minutes later. Genevieve showed good persistence in trying to get through the Bellarine defenders. Imogen, Basyl, Charlotte and Grace defended well to prevent some Bellarine attacks getting past them. Imogen was also unlucky to miss out on a goal. With a few minutes remaining in the half, Kiah slotted through a goal to give the team a 3-0 lead at half-time.
In the second half, Newtown had a few short corners which allowed us to try some of the things learnt during training. Patrick was able to score a goal with a nice hit, but then Bellarine gathered themselves and with a long hit into attack, caught our defenders off-guard to score a goal. Bellarine followed up a few minutes later with another goal and it seemed like they might just have the momentum to continue on. However Olivia steadied the team with a goal at the 10 minute mark, and Kiah scored another goal mid-way through the term.
The final score was Newtown 6-2. A great game for Newtown with everyone contributing well across the pitch. Thanks to Teijai for being goalkeeper for the day. While he didn’t see much action in the first half, he was certainly kept busy in the second half.
Under 11 South
Newtown Spirit vs College Green 2-0
A dry day greeted us at Lloyd Reserve and a full team helped along once again by a couple of U8 players stepping up (they will be well and truly ready for under 11’s next season). Max and Nate once again played brilliantly. It was a slightly frustrating match in that College had no goalie, we had lots of play up forward but the ball just could not get through thanks to great defence from the College team! Kellie had the kids changing positions through the entire game and with an extra one on the bench in the second half we had the legs which certainly showed in the second half.
1 goal up, thanks to Angus, going into the second half, did not feel like enough breathing space and there was some tension on the side lines from the supporters. Another great goal from Angus gave us the space and we almost had another ‘goal of the season’ with another blistering pass into the circle not quite finding its mark. Maggie was in goals for us this week and what a great job she did. A fantastic save saw College kept goalless. Claire would have been very impressed by the skills Maggie showed! Well done everyone.
Newtown Strikers vs Torquay Tornadoes 0-0
Torquay kept the pressure on the Newtown defence for most of the first half, and despite great attempts by Nathan to clear the ball from 16 yard free hits, the orange crowd in front of him made it very difficult. Some great stops and clearances by Michael in goals and Kenna was superb as usual in positioning herself well and clearing the ball to the opposite side of the field. Great midfield play by Jack and Declan with Grace showing some good persistence to chase the ball. The second half saw Newtown create some more space and more attacks with better passes to Chris and Gil in good position on the wings. Lachlan and Zoe showed great focus on the ball, working hard to help their team and pass the ball into attack. There were some close calls in front of goal, unforunately without a score on the board. Best Team Player awards to Jack and Chris, and a great game from all players.
Newtown Strikers vs Kardinia 12-0
On Saturday morning the Strikers, with 10 players, took on Kardinia. The Strikers dominated the general play with Miles creating many opportunities from the back half and setting up forays forward. Charley played an excellent game attacking through the middle and scoring three goals. Ella was very effective with three goals, Jonah opened his account for the season with two goals, Miles scored two goals and there were singles to Flynn and Ely put in an excellent deflection.
The two Angus’s were rock solid in defence with Angus R taking some nasty blows when defending. Sam was creative in the second half and Lotte played a solid game down the left wing. In all it was a solid effort against younger opposition and provided a good opportunity to practice spreading the ball wide to attack.
Newtown Spirit vs Golden Plains Bellarine 8-0
On a beautiful sunny Saturday morning the U13 Newtown Spirit team had a strong win against Golden Plains. There was some great team play with passes wide to the wings and then team work to get the ball down and into the circle to create lots of scoring opportunities. Some highlights were Archie scoring a nice goal from a crossed ball. Bailey preventing forward attacks with nice defensive work, and Will showing some nice skills to open up play.
Welcome back to Amelia after what sounds like an awesome holiday! And a BIG well done and well played to Nick who played his first ever game. Keep up the great work!!
Newtown Strikers vs Kardinia 3-2
The Strikers had a hard won victory against an inform Kardinia on the weekend, securing the victory with a final score line of 3:2. Early goals from Jack and Oscar in the first half were quickly countered by the Kardinia with fast and accurate play that off balanced our defence. After regrouping during the half time break, the team re formed their structures and took control of the game securing the win with strong offensive and defensive play.
It was decided that the overall performance of the team, especially during the second half, was so good that no one player could be singled out as best on field, so the whole team gained the nomination.
Newtown Spirit vs Bellarine Storm 1-1
Newtown Strikers vs Torquay 3-1
Our challenge this week was having a lot of weary players, one recovering from illness and one getting injured during the game. Tom P got the game off to an ominous start after scoring from a nice strike in the first 2 minutes of the game. We continued to dominate through the early stages of the game, with midfielders Tom M, Erin and Luke P covering their defenders whilst still pressing the ball forward and keeping it locked up in our forward half. Torquay only managed to get the ball into their offensive 25 a couple of times in the first half and our fullbacks and goalie didn’t see a lot of the action. However the fatigue from playing previous matches on the weekend started to creep into our game in the second half and our intensity tapered off. Leads weren’t quite as strong as during the first half and our manning dropped off a little to the extent that Torquay were able to sneak in a goal. Fortunately we were able to get away with winning a game whilst functioning at 75%!
Newtown Spirit – Bye
Division 1 Men
Newtown Falcons vs Geelong 12-1
Newtown Strikers vs Torquay 3-5
I guess our dream run had to come to an end eventually, and in the first 15mins of the game you could excuse us for getting our hopes up as we sprinted out of the boxes scoring two quick fire goals to put Torquay on the ropes. Unfortunately, they were able to recover and as the second half whistle was blown we found ourselves a goal down and with a tough second half of hockey ahead of us.
The unusually warm conditions didn’t help as fatigue played a large role in the second half with two additional goals scored by Torquay and only one scored by the Strikers in return. That being said, all of the guys played a fantastic game of hockey, it was competitive to the end and reinforces the progress that we’ve made over the season as this type of loss would have previously ended in the double digits.
Next week has us up against the Torquay Tornadoes who are only 4 points behind us on the ladder so a rebound win will be a necessity.
Division 1 Women
Newtown Falcons vs Geelong 3-5
A tough game this week against the second team on the ladder, and Geelong came out early with speedy forwards putting pressure on our defence. Despite good positioning in deep defence by Ainsley, Bec W and Penny, Geelong were able to find space in the circle. Mid-field players worked hard with Deb, Jess W and Elese cutting off many of Geelong’s forward moves, and sending the ball to Phoebe, Bec C and Nicole in our forward line. Our second goal from a looping ball over the heads of the defenders by Deb gave us some inspiration, creating plenty of attack but Geelong were able to cut off the passes across the front of the goal. Great position on the post saw another goal scored after a cross from the right.
Newtown Strikers vs Bellarine Storm 0-4
The Strikers game against Bellarine saw our defence put to the test with quite a few fast Bellarine players splitting us apart with their speed. We had quite a few fantastic plays from Eliza, Georgie, Shannon R and Julie that saw us get near the goals but were unable to get it into the back of the net. There were some great defensive tackles by all of our mid/back line and a job very well done by Jen W in goals. Unfortunately our score line didn’t reflect the good game we had with a 0-4 finish.
Division 2 Men
Newtown Spirit vs Bellarine 0-3
This was our final for the year. After some good performances recently we needed to win to continue the dream of playing finals. Captain Don to his credit made sure all his players got a game rather than double up Division 1 players to gain an advantage. Tom P got the job tagging Victorian Under 18 gun Liam Kerr-Nelson and made him work for his rewards. Goalie Brodie and defenders Hudson and Richard made some great saves early on. However Bellarine’s combination of experience and speedy skilful forwards proved too strong in the end. The Spirit guys did show spirit at times but needed to want the ball more, possess and pass better than the opposition.
Tough games ahead against Corio and Torquay. Finals or No finals let’s finish the season in a competitive fashion. Go The Spirit!!!
Division 2 Women
Newtown Rebels vs Saints 0-0
This would have to be our best game for the season. All players stepped up a gear and met Saints attacks with determination and grit. Smart play along the backline saw great clearances from 16 yards with Ros, Sharon and Tracey feeding through to Newtown forwards with Claire’s great calls. Great fast breaks from Peta, Phoebe, Katelyn, Nicola and Bron saw several corners in our favour. And stirring up trouble in the mid field were Pam and Kellie. A great result that reflects the evenness of the game and the seesawing action.
Welcome back to Bron C. A huge thank you to Phoebe for filling in.