About 1/3 of the way through the hockey season, and this week was a good illustration of the changeable weather conditions – warm and sunny on Saturday, rain and hail on Sunday. Congratulations to all players on their efforts whatever the weather.
As the hockey season progresses, our young hockey stars are gaining confidence and improving skills each week. Jasmine and Amelia showed us some great dribbling skills. Good understanding of passing the ball and running to a new space by Alexander and Harrison was a feature of the game of keepings off, with Zeph making good position too.
An excellent game this week, resulted in a 2-2 draw between Team Orange and Team Red. Lenny joined us for his first game of hockey, and showed great skills and focus on the ball. Braydn was again making good position and passing well to team mates. Ebony, Olivia and Tom worked hard, with Ebony making great runs to meet the ball in space, and push forward into attack. Baxter showed great tackling skills and gained control for his team, passing to the advantage of his team mates on many occasions.
Newtown Raiders vs College Green
Well done to everybody on another great game. We are nearly half way through the hockey season and every week it is great see the team improve all the time. Isabelle did a fabulous job as our centre and was well supported by Lily and Hannah on the wings. Oscar and Jesse did a great job in defence, stopping several attempts at goal. Both Hannah and Chloe demonstrated great dribbling and passing skills down the line, demonstrating what they had learnt during practice that morning.
Well Done to Chloe for being awarded Subway Player of the Match, with some great focus and keeping her stick on the ground to gain possession.
Newtown Strikers vs Kardinia Kangaroos
Strikers took on a strong Kardinia team this week. Strikers were caught napping in the first part of the game with Kardinia scoring some early goals. Once Newtown started to play the game of passing into space and out wide, the goals began coming. Will was very strong in attack scoring a couple of times in the first half.
The second half saw most of the game played in Newtown’s forward line with Matilda dribbling hard in attack and excellent passing in from the centres. There was a brilliant piece of play with Will passing to Matilda in space, who dribbled down the wing then passed in to Isabella who scored a great goal. Awesome display of passing out to players on the wing. Well done Team. This week Sam received the Subway Encouragement Award for his solid performance in the centre.
Newtown Spirit vs Torquay
Spirit overcame a defensive first half to shine in the second in a friendly battle against Torquay at Lloyd Reserve on Saturday. Braydn, playing arguably his best game of the season so far, tackled consistently and marked the opposition with persistence. He managed to stop Torquay play on several occasions, then fed the ball to his waiting teammates. Baxter and Avah were a wall of defence while Pollyanna directed some lovely free hits out wide and Summah was poised for action at wing. Michael did a great job time and again across the half-back line.
At half time Coach Kellie praised the team for their defensive work but urged them to spread out more. She set a distance of “five big steps” between teammates when setting up for Spirit free hits. And she urged the youngsters to get into position swiftly. In the second half, after a position reshuffle, Spirit players threw themselves into attack, shooting several goals. Centre forward Avah and left wing Michael proved dangerous up forward while Baxter instigated several great passages of play from left half, always lifting his head and looking to select the best passing option whenever he got the ball.
Torquay showed some strong defence and managed to repel several Spirit forays towards goals. Both teams put on a great display for the spectators cheering on the sidelines.
Coach Kellie congratulated her team for a fantastic second half, where players got into position quickly, called and worked hard to win the ball. Braydn won the Subway Best Team Player Award after, in the coach’s words, “playing a blinder”. Well done Braydn.
Newtown Rebels vs Kardinia Kookaburras
Rebels had another tough match this week against the Kardinia Kookaburras, however their skills and confidence are improving with each game played. In the first half there was an early attack from the Kookaburras, however Audrey defended well and Sophie performed strongly in goal. Rebels then gained some confidence with improved passing and started to move forward. Aiden and Genevieve showed great tenacity, tackling well and never giving up when trying to get the ball. At half-time the coach stressed the importance of Rebels marking players from the opposition but then moving quickly to take a free hit and find space. In the second half Kookaburras kept up the pressure with a relentless attack. Paddy, along with Aiden in goal, defended well, while Neve and Annabelle made excellent passes when taking free hits. Overall, Rebels enjoyed a great match and most importantly kept smiling!
Sophie was awarded Subway Player of the Week for her great listening to the coach and her fantastic work in goal and defence.
Newtown Spirit vs Newtown Strikers 0-0
Spirit began the game with the coach’s reminder in mind – “trust your team mates”. This saw a fantastic first half, with everyone’s efforts “off the charts”. There was some great tackling with the stick on the ground, and perseverance winning the free hit for Spirit. There was some solid defence by Meyah and Max who was everywhere, pushing the ball out to the wings very well. Ruben at half back cut off many Strikers attacks and returned the ball to attack for Spirit, always looking for team mates to pass to. Strategies for the second half included spreading out away from team mates and passing the ball around the oppostion, rather than into the crowd. Coach Kellie encouraged players to call to team mates when going for the ball “I’ve got it!”, allowing team mates to get into position ready for a pass.
The second half was highlighted by fantastic tackling from everyone, and it was great to see Leo pushing forward with the ball and winning the free. Keeping the stick down and avoiding ‘hacking’ at the ball saw Spirit gain possession on numerous occasions and with control, were able to create many forward moves. There was some excellent “manning up” as Ryley pointed out. A tendency to pass the ball into the middle limited further attacks, so taking the time to look up and hit wide is an aim for next week.
This was a great game to watch, everyone was engaged in the game and had fun – (all kids agreed they had fun!!). Thank you to Surry for volunteering to play for the opposition. Result: 0-0 No goals were scored, but it was a fantastic game to watch as agreed by all parents!
Subway Award: Ruben – consistent effort throughout the entire game, always looking for his team players to hit out to. Best team player: Lucy – for her awesomeness as a goalie, with fantastic kicking to stop the goals at critical moments.
Newtown Strikers vs Newtown Spirit 0-0
Firstly a big thank you to Surry for playing for Strikers. What a fantastic game from everyone this week. We put into practice what we have been focusing on for the last few training sessions. Passing to the side and not giving up. We still need to remember to take 5 steps back when the opponent has a penalty and not leave a player open.
Thamindu, Alex and Amelia successfully defended the goals all game. Eliza never gave up throughout the game and covered so much territory. Brandon worked the wing and pushed the ball beautifully along the side line. Alex even had a fancy pass between a players feet and came so close to scoring. Eliza-May, Ruby and Amber worked together on the front line to keep the ball moving and Isla is really developing a roving role throughout the mid field.
Thank to Jai who is currently injured but still attended the game and encouraged the team. Subway and Best Team Player Awards for the day went to Eliza May and Alex.
Newtown Strikers vs Bellarine Lightning 1-0
What an awesome game we witnessed on Saturday watching Newtown Strikers play the undefeated Bellarine Lightning team. It was an entertaining, fast paced, energetic game from the start to the finish. It was so pleasing to see how much the team has improved and gelled together since round 1. It’s obvious that the hard work they are putting in at training is paying off. Strikers were constantly on the attack throughout the match putting much pressure on the opposition. There were no goals scored in the first half and only one scored in the second half which was all that was needed for the Strikers to win the match.
Tom was again unbeatable in defence giving great support to Jamie. He was also strongly supported by Cameron, Alice and Ruby who were relentless in their tackling and winning the ball. Archie and Adam were kept very busy in their centre roles both putting in a fantastic effort with their stick skills. Thomas, Kenna and Chloe on the wing were always in the right positions when needed and Chloe had a great shot at goal which only narrowly missed. Gil was very strong at left inner and Jack was showing some talent with his reverse stick work and dribbling. He also scored the match winning goal.
The parents watching, the coaches and myself were so proud of the whole team and the way they all played which made it difficult to choose our best on fields, but for the second week in a row, Tom was the unanimous choice with Jack and Alice also named. Keep up the great work Strikers!
Newtown Rebels vs Geelong College 3-0
Rebels continued to show improvement this week putting on a strong display against Geelong College winning 3-0. Brandon was outstanding completing a hat-trick of goals. Over the past few weeks Rebels have been working on switches out of defence and through the midfield, as well as passing the ball backwards to team mates in better positions. Right from the start you could see improvement in this part of their game. Sam, Basyl and Luca showed great understanding of each other, producing several switches out of defence which kept Geelong College on their toes. Lachlan provided excellent support to the defence, receiving some red hot passes which he trapped and moved quickly down field to his teammates. Isobel and Mai were as tenacious in offence and the midfield, and weren’t scared to pass the ball backwards to create opportunity. Adele produced some excellent passes to Kiah and Teijai who were hardworking as always. Imogen was dangerous around goals, getting herself in the right position time and again but just couldn’t finish off all of her good work. Well done to Pat for going goalie this week!!!
Newtown Spirit vs Torquay 2-0
Another clear day greated the team on Sunday but it certainly was cold. The team welcomed Daniel back and Eliza V helped us out once again. Spirit started off with great gusto and put an enormous amount of pressure on Torquay right from the start of the game. Some very near misses from Maggie had the supporters on their knees with excitement. Torquay had fantastic defence and their goalie did very well indeed. As the first half rounded out Edie in goals was put under a little bit of pressure by Torquay and deflected a certain goal. What a great way to celebrate her 25th game for the club!
The second half saw Spirit a little lack lustre with Torquay applying the pressure from the start. It was a little nervous but then Spirit lifted and had many many shots on goal and short corners. India had 2 close misses and Maggie was also in the best position but was denied. The two Spirit goals came from Angus following some fantastic team play to get the ball up forward. The entire team were a part of the goals and should be very proud of their efforts. Archer seemed to be everywhere and made an impression every time he touched the ball. Matilda was quick to the ball, Oli and Mitch read the play beautifully down the back, Harry brought the ball forward early well, Daniel was making an impression in the middle, Lachie was of great support to Archer and Harry and also read the play brilliantly while Eliza played with grunt and determination. Well done everyone. Peter was very impressed with you all.
Newtown Spirit vs Torquay 4-1
Newtown Spirit faced second on the ladder Torquay on Saturday for their Round 5 clash. With our regular goalkeeper Max away, the coach opted for a kicking full back, and Sam took on the role in the first half. Torquay also used a kicking full back for the first half. Torquay immediately had our defenders under pressure and had 2 short corners early, but our defenders, in particular Amelia in her first game back from injury, did well to hold them off. Newtown then took the ball forward, and Harry was able to slot a nice goal through. With a short corner soon after, Newtown went up 2-nil after a hit from Jamie. Grace was positioned nicely up forward to receive some fast breaks and Charley as always gave us plenty of run from defence into attack.
At half-time, the coach again called for the ball to be kept out wide, and wanted more 1-touch passes as the team was holding on to the ball a little too long. Also, when running forward with the ball, our lead players were asked to hold up the ball a little to allow other players to join them up forward and assist. In the second half, Torquay used a dedicated goalkeeper but Will got the ball past to take the score to 3-nil. Torquay quickly gathered their composure and broke through our defence to bring the score to 3-1. Newtown continued their attacking pressure and through Jamie we were able to go 4-1 up. There was great defensive pressure from Bailey, Harley, Nick and Riley all match, and Claudia provided great running up the wing into the circle.
Torquay kept fighting and were unlucky not to get a goal after two lovely crosses across goal and one disallowed goal that was hit outside the circle. Newtown also had some further chances with Harry and Grace working together well on a number of occasions and Charley, Will, Ella and Jamie all having attempts defended by Torquay. Coach Carl praised the team for their good passing and for holding their positions well.
Newtown Strikers vs Geelong Jaguars 2-0
Goal scorers Harry and Jonah.
Newtown Strikers vs Kardinia 4-2
We fronted up with only 9 players for the start of the game against a fairly strong Kardinia team who also had a bench. Within the first minute Kardinia scored a goal and all of the Newtown fans thought that it could get ugly quickly. However our defensive players kept their chins up and responded well, locking down the backline after that first goal and depriving Kardinia of any easy attacking play for the rest of the game. Angus and Byron did a fantastic job niggling and tackling the Kardinia forwards, some who were twice their size; and anything that got through them was easily shutdown by Corey. Jamie jumped on the field 15 minutes into the game bringing our number of players up to 10 which provided great support and an additional goal sneak that the U17 opposition teams often tend to overlook because of his size, usually to their regret. The efforts of the improved defensive work soon flowed through to the forwards and Tom soon scored on a fast break.
After that point, we never really looked back and could have easily won by a greater margin. Our work rate in the mid-field through Jonah, Declan and Rachael was very high often digging deep to chase down a loose ball or to drop back and defend. Our key advantage over other teams this year has been our team spirit which generates strong will, a high work rate and confidence in each other; this then results in lots of opportunities as they make leads and look for each other. Great work Strikers and keep it up.
Newtown Spirit vs Torquay 1-3
The game started at a frantic pace with two short corners to Newtown and one to Torquay within the first 5 minutes of the game. This set the tone for much of the first half with play from one end to the other – it was tiring to watch!! Newtown was not marking effectively late in the first half allowing Torquay to finally score.
The start of the second half was scrappy and Torquay were able to go 2 goals up early on. Newtown eventually pierced their defence via a quick counterattack and Miles was able to draw the goal keeper off his line and pull back one goal. Torquay continued to apply pressure and scored a third goal to finish at 3:1.
A hard fought game against strong opposition but no reason we can’t be more competitive with hard work at training ready for our next meeting with Torquay in Round 10. Thanks to Caleb for keeping goal at short notice.
Division 1 Men
Newtown Falcons vs Torquay 1-2
The game started off at a fast pace with both teams showing great skills. There was plenty of switching play, calling and moving to the ball. The weather at this stage was nice and sunny and it looked like a great day for a hockey match. Falcons kept Torquay out with some great goalkeeping skills by Campbell and some solid defence by Lachie, Sean, Pat, Nick P and Leo. Mighty fine stickwork was a feature of the play for these players. Then the weather changed, the sun disappeared, down came the rain and the hail, and it made playing more difficult at times. However the two teams kept on playing with determination and great effort.
Nic M had to leave the game, but his spot was filled by Tom P, and Oliver ran on and off the bench. Players continued to run hard, just to keep warm. Falcons scored first from a passage of great field play. Great passing, with the ball switched into the dee for Zed to execute a reverse stick shot under the diving goalkeeper, and the score was 1-0. Torquay replied from a short corner, making it 1-1. Late in the game, Torquay scored from a puzzling free hit. Both the Falcons forward and defence lineups did well, with maximum effort. All in all, it was a great game of hockey on a day where the weather made it difficult for both teams to play to potential.
Thanks to Tom P and Oliver for filling in.
Newtown Strikers vs Geelong Jaguars 3-4
If only we could bottle the 15 minutes where we scored 3 goals at the end of the second half, then repeat that three more times. Unfortunately, if it was that easy we’d all be superstars so for now this game will be a reminder to the Strikers that we need to get back to basics, strong passing, trapping, off the ball running, all things that we’ve been taught from the junior level.
The game itself was competitive, but Geelong were the only team to score in the first half and a quarter, at which point the Strikers shifted up a gear putting three quick fire goals in the back of the net. With the scores tied and only seconds left in the game, Geelong managed to get a short corner, the final whistle blew and they scored putting them up by one goal.
This was possibly fitting considering the rest of the game, maybe we were a little complacent after playing the top teams in the division the past few weeks, thinking this game would be easier, it is clear now that there will be no easy games this season and that as a team we have to renew our drive to be a finals contender and look to next week where we’ll be taking on the second on the ladder Torquay .
Division 1 Women
Newtown Falcons vs Saints Black 0-7
Congratulations to the Falcons players on their courage and determination in the game on Sunday. Despite the bad weather, which included wind, rain and hail, the team kept fighting against the odds to try very hard to score goals. Unfortunately the opposition were determined to stop us scoring goals. Saints played at a fast pace, switching the play quickly to find players in space, and using accurate passing and deflections to achieve results. Emma P stopped many attacks, playing with great focus and controlled tackles and was well supported by Bec and Kate in midfield. Half time saw the score at 0-4, but this score did not reflect the good play of Falcons in attack, with Shannon and Hailey showing great effort running to receive the ball and confront opponents. Cool, calm and controlled play by Jess set up a number of forward moves for Falcons. Thanks to Sam, Shannon and Claire who changed their plans at short notice to help us play well as a team. Every one listened to Deb’s pre game strategies and implemented them successfully. Enjoy the bye next week, as we also have the long weekend off. See you all rested and ready for another game on the 18th June at 12.30
Newtown Strikers vs Torquay 0-8
The recruit of the week was Deb, filling in as keeper, and showing some excellent moves.
Division 2 Men
Newtown Spirit vs Bellarine 2-2
Newtown Spirit had a good game across the board this week. In the end we achieved a 2 all draw against Bellarine although Spirit had many more chances going into the D. Gwyn, Beau, Adam, Callum and Daniel all played great structured and fast hockey. Gordon did a lot of shouting and is looking forward to Fitzy taking over coaching again next week. Unfortunately one of the older Bellarine players thought it was necessary to injure our young players in order to even up the match. I hope we do not see any more of this behaviour on the hockey field this season.
Division 2 Women
Newtown Spirit vs Geelong Jaguars 1-2
An excellent game from Spirit with solid defence again by Hill and Wendy, who stuck to her player well and limited Geelong’s ability to capitalise on forward moves. With space available, Hill made some great clearing passes from defence. Some great chasing and passing from the midfield by Beth, Kellie and Andie and the fast pace and accurate passing of Georgie and Jacquie created some lovely attacks. Great running by De and Peta on the forward line to move to the ball. Great switches by Peta got the ball into our attacking zone and there were a number of opportunities before Jacquie put one in the net for Spirit. Geelong continued to press forward with some fast and skilfull players, and managed to outmanoeuvre the defence to score. With 10 players, Spirit still managed to cover opponents well.