2018 Hockey Season – May 19 & 20

We are nearly one third of the way through the 2018 hockey season already, and there were some great matches again this week.

Under 6

Our Joeys players are learning to pass the ball accurately and work with other players to get the ball back again. There were some lovely straight passes from all the players, with Casey and Joseph doing especially well. Dribbling and ball control skills are getting better each week, and scanning is a valuable tool in getting through the Monster Forest.

Under 8

Newtown Spirit vs College Green

Spirit concentrated on getting into position swiftly when umpires signalled free hits during an Under 8 encounter with College Green at Lloyd Reserve on Saturday. While both teams initially clustered their play in the middle of the field, Spirit players soon started looking for options to move the ball around their opposition by heading out wide. Right half Oliver provided excellent square passing opportunities for his team mates, while Maia was in great position on the wing. Summah and Pollyanna were enthusiastic contributors and Braxton put in a pearler of a game, moving his body into the best possible position to pressure opposition players time and again.

The team marked well and called loudly during the game. Acting on Coach Kellie’s half-time instructions, they swiftly got themselves into position the minute the umpire blew the whistle during the second half, which featured a quicker, more spread-out style of play from the young Newtown outfit.

Kellie gave the Best Team Player Award to the side’s youngest player – Braxton – for his stand-out game of the season. She said Braxton had listened to her instructions, acted on them, kept his body in the right position and didn’t take his eye off the ball. Well done Braxton for a great game.

Many thanks to College Green for lending one of its players to Spirit to even up numbers. Ava’s help was much appreciated.

Newtown Rebels vs College Blue

Newtown Rebels continue to show great understanding and strategic thinking despite their relative inexperience. Determination to get the ball by Sam, George and Edward gave Newtown the advantage and the play moved into attack quickly. Excellent awareness of team mates’ positioning saw some very effective passing in front of goals between Edward and George, opening up space to move forward. Sofia was always in good position, with stick on the ground and provided some quick free passes to outmanoeuvre the opposition defence. Harrison and Zeph worked hard in the second half, keeping their sticks down to gain possession, and then followed up with some accurate passing to team mates and spaces.

Best Team Player Award to Zeph.

Newtown Strikers vs College White

A great game by Newtown Strikers, with some excellent teamwork and passing. Lachie showed great focus on the ball and perseverance, and finished with the Best Team Player Award for this week.

Under 10 Mixed

Newtown Spirit v Kardinia 1-0

Kellie felt like it must have been the end of season game……all of our skills and team playing were excellent. Sticks were down, playing the ball out wide, and excellent passes. In the second half she wanted us to play around the low grassed areas so we had a better chance to push the ball and have better control. She also wanted us to get out of the way of our own players, we were mingling together a little bit so we had reduced opportunity to pass to anyone. We needed to make sure we were keeping our triangle setup and make sure we were at least 5 steps away from each other. Kellie wanted us to pretend that we all hadn’t had a shower in a week and we were really smelly!

The second half saw us score the one and only goal by Leo with help from Matilda. But we did have a lot of opportunity at goals and Kellie’s advice was that we shouldn’t stop, keep at the ball when heading in for a goal – keep attacking the ball. All the skills continue to be executed brilliantly. Hamish again had a ball free game – not one touch! Hamish also celebrated his 28 games – apologies for not reporting this at the 25 game milestone. Awards went to Nate and Matilda.

Newtown Rebels vs Red Jaguars 2-0

Thank you to Ruben and Matilda for joining us for our game against Red Jaguars after having already played for Spirit.

Great footwork from Baxter throughout the game and moving himself around to be in the right position. Emma, Ruby, Alex and Jai worked extremely well together with good strong passes and working the ball down the line to create our goal scoring opportunities. Eliza was everywhere throughout the game and her determination and tenacity stopped Red Jaguars many times when they had gained control of the ball. In only her second game India displayed a growing confidence and saw her stealing the ball off her opponents stick. Eliza and Matilda also worked together creating a strong back line to prevent Red Jaguars scoring and knowing when to leave the ball.

Although we were making good strong passes, Claire discussed at halftime that a lot of Newtown players as well as the opposition were crowding the middle. Emma played a great supporting role along the wing and covered so much ground and reading the play so well. Some fantastic ball control from Ruben through the centre of field while under pressure from the opposition and with Tommy staying close by. Amelia was supported by Elliott in the goals and made a great power kick and stopped a second attempt on goals by going to goal in the splits. Elliott followed the play throughout the game and moved position on the field as required.

Player of the match was awarded to Eliza and Subway voucher was awarded to Elliott.

Newtown Strikers vs Torquay 1-0

The new look Strikers team played their most even game so far. With a more attacking line-up to start the game, Surry made several long runs into the forward line and the team eventually capitalised with a quick push in to the goal by Meyah from close range. Our forwards began to run in support of the ball carrier and continually applied pressure in front of goals. Two short corners eventuated and those involved in these set play’s, tried their best to execute what we had practised at training. We will continue to focus on our long and accurate pushing and clean hitting of the ball in this regard.

Zac and Will communicated well on the last line of defence, stopping several of the opposition attacks deep in the circle. With encouragement, they swept the ball out wide in order for our half backs and wings to run on to. Lisette continued her great form on the right wing from the previous week and made several long runs along the sideline, keeping the ball on her stick and maintaining possession. Avah started the game confidently at half back, tackling well and sending the ball forward to the run of Michael and Lisette. She played her best game of the season, earning the Best Team Player for the week. Well done Avah! Michael played a slightly different role this week in the first half, moving to an inner position and listened well in regard to positioning and his role in both defence and attack! Kye was once again very solid across half back and broke the game open with his clean hits through the opposition players, enabling our forwards to run on to them. He maintained his positioning extremely well, pushing up and covering back when required. Madison played a number of positions during the game, showing her flexibility and providing plenty of run as a forward target in the latter part of the game. Hannah suited up in the goalie gear this week for her first time and despite not being required for the majority of the game, she made a fantastic clearing kick from the goal line in what was the opposition’s most promising move forward. Great job Hannah!

The second half saw a shuffle of positions and with Zac moving to an inner position he combined well with Jacob and Madison on the left side of the field. Several fast breaks resulted from wide passes out of congestion in the middle which was pleasing to see. Despite no changes to the overall score line in the second half there was some very positive team play and everyone embraced the opportunity to try out different positions. A thank you to Jacob for filling in for us this week. His determination and persistence to successfully win the ball on several occasions, earnt him our Subway award.

Under 10 Girls

Team Orange vs Team Non-bibs 1-1

Non-bibs team – Lily, Aimee, Phoebe, Amelia, Ruby, Lauren. Goalscorer Ruby.

Team Orange – Zoe, Elliott, Maddison, Stella, Matilda, Alex. Goalscorer Maddison.

We focused on wanting to go wide and quickly with the ball but also making sure our teammates are there to receive the ball. A couple of very close misses by Phoebe on goals by never giving up and pushing the ball well. Great talking from Ruby to Lily and decision making so penalties were taken quickly. A strong pass from Amelia to Aimee to set up Ruby to score. Fancy turns by Stella were displayed throughout the game.

At half time Claire discussed good position but make sure your team mate knows you’re there and only need to call once. Trust the full back to make the decision and they move into required spots to stop the run of play. Look ahead so you know what you’re going to do. Nice strong passes but need to follow up in case of missed shot. Aim for team mates stick side and work on switching the play.

In the second half, Alex set up a pass to Madison to score.  We have seen some great development in skills and confidence over the last few weeks as the girls adjust to the faster surface.

Under 12

Newtown Strikers vs Torquay 0-3

Strikers had their opportunities in the 1st half but failed to penetrate the Torquay defence which had an extra field player with no GK in their net. Torquay made the most of Strikers turnovers scoring from the field and penalty corners (3-0). Max had a great game but ran out of legs trying to dodge and weave around the Torquay defence. Charlotte and Sam were also good players for the Strikers.

Newtown Spirit vs Golden Plains 2-2

Saturday morning brought the match between Newtown Spirit and Golden Plains.  On rotation in goal, Daniel warmed up well and did a great job keeping Golden Plains scoreless in the first half.  Leading up front in attack, Ollie A, Liam K and Bella kept pressure in the circle providing us with a series of short corners which Liam P-H capitalised on for a strong goal.  Taking our lead of 1-0 into the second half, Gil used strong passing play from Emma and Ollie J to score a lovely hard goal which was drilled past the Golden Plains keeper.

The tide seemed to turn though at 2-0 down and Golden Plains attacked more strongly. Our defence, including our halfback Grace and fullbacks Issy and Lachie (who bravely played despite some soreness) cleared a number of strong passes and hits from the circle.  Golden Plains continued to drive forward and two goals to Golden Plains followed after strong short corner play.

Coach Tom congratulated the players on a tough game and encouraged players to concentrate on three keys aspects for our future games:

  1. Marking a player and keeping your stick down;
  2. Looking to move the ball wide to provide good opportunities for attacking play in order to avoid the pack that tends to congest the middle of the field; and
  3. Keeping the ball under control and dribbling it on your own stick without needing to get it away in a hurry.  That way, you provide yourself with time to look for options and your team mates can move themselves into positions to receive the ball.

A 2-2 draw with Golden Plains played with great keenness and energy, keep up the super work Newtown Spirit, keep enjoying your hockey and see you at training!

Under 14

Newtown Spirit vs Newtown Strikers  5-0

Spirit were missing a few players with JCC on but were lucky to have Isabel and Liam available to fill-in from U12. Spirit had the majority of possession in the first half and were eventually on the scoreboard with a goal to Will from a short corner. The second goal came from an intercept by Charley who was able to accelerate away to an open goal from the 25 yard line. A through ball that found Grace in space was the catalyst for the third Spirit goal for the half.

Spirit goal keeper for this round, Ethan, had a quiet first half but was in the action early in the second half with Strikers attacking goal from the start of play, followed by a short corner. Great kicking skills from Ethan kept Strikers scoreless and led to a counterattack by Spirit. Grace was ideally positioned on the right post and a well placed pass from Charley resulted in a second goal to Grace. The final goal was to Liam from a short corner with the score finishing at 5:0. It was a tough game for the opposition Strikers who playing without a goal keeper, but to their credit they fought hard for the whole match.

Special thanks to Ethan for a sterling effort in goal this week, and to Isabel and Liam for stepping up from U12. See you all at training 5:30pm on Thursday and our next game on Sunday 27th May 10:15am against Kardinia Maroon.

Newtown Strikers vs Newtown Spirit 0-5

Strikers and Spirit met on Sunday for a second encounter in the season.  Strikers were down to 8 players and Spirit 10.  This meant Strikers played without a goalie.

Coach Telfer had requested that the players run hard and long throughout match given the absence of numbers and was not disappointed.  The players really matched the Spirit team in general play.  Ultimately Spirit was able to score as a product of there being no goalie but Strikers managed  to limit the opportunities even though they were outnumbered on the field.  0-4 at half time.  At the break the message was even more running and for the forwards to sit further back to facilitate passes from defense.  This worked and Strikers created repeat short corners and opportunities throughout the half.  At the end the scoreline was 0-5 but it was a hard working and credible effort.  Special mention for Lillie who played her best game for the season.

Under 17

Newtown Spirit vs Newtown Strikers 6-1

Newtown Spirit played Newtown Strikers in what is always a tightly contested game, and Sunday’s game did not disappoint. Full credit to Oliver, Amelia and Harry who played up from the U/14s to make a full Spirit team, and were instrumental in the successful outcome of the game. The pressure was on Strikers for the full game as they played with only 7 players.

Spirit made the most of the advantage and played decisively throughout the game with Miles, Tom, Angus and Ben strong in attack, and Rachel as always, strong in defence displaying her excellent flat stick tackling. Miles showed terrific speed and determination to chase down balls and was able to convert 4 throughout the game. Tom was also strong in attack and scored 2 goals.

During the post match talk Coach Paul praised the team for “using their wits” during the game and encouraged them to replicate that play and mindset in the upcoming contests against Torquay. He also said Amelia did an extremely good job filling in, as did all our extras in their second game of the day. Well done team for working hard and getting a win.

Newtown Strikers vs Newtown Spirit 1-6

The U17 Strikers played very well given the lack of numbers and the ring in coach they had this week. The final score was 6 – 1 but for much of the fist half we were able to gallantly hold Spirit at 1 all. We only had 6 confirmed before the game but Oliver Telfer was able to step in to help us avoid a forfeit. Well done to all of the Strikers players – everyone stepped up to the challenge and played well and made great second efforts to win the ball.

Division 1 Men

Newtown Falcons vs Torquay 0-9

It was a tough game for Falcons this week, coming up against the Torquay 1’s! Torquay had their usual Premier League suspects which proved to be far too strong and in the end we went down 9-0.
There is certainly some room for improvement with some tightening up in defence. But there were also some positives – when we moved the ball quickly and transitioned we looked threatening and provided some scoring opportunities. We look forward to the challenge next time we meet.

Luke Porra was IGA Player of the Game with a strong performance in defence. It was great to see the old poise, skill, strength and determination back that we know and love!

Division 1 Women

Newtown Falcons vs Geelong 0-4

Division 2 Men

Newtown Spirit vs Torquay 0-3

With a lot of players out this weekend, we fronted up with a fairly young team.  However this did not prevent us form playing some great hockey.  Some strong defensive play in the first half with Tom Mc, Vince and Willy O guarding their opponents tightly and Will H continuing with his very impressive goalkeeping. Woody came off injured late in the first half after being hit in the foot by friendly fire.

A cheap goal by Torquay had us down 1-0 at half time in what was a very competitive game.  Tom C and Oli both played great in the mid-field ably supported by a cameo from Stu, and together created many opportunities to help drive the ball forward.  Unfortunately we started to tire in the second half and weren’t able to get on the scoreboard.  Despite what seemed to be a very competitive and relatively even game, we finished with a loss against the top team.  However there are some very promising signs as this team is finding good structure and coordination. More wins are just around the corner.

Division 2 Women

Newtown Spirit vs Torquay 1-0

Two wins in a row! A great game from Newtown Spirit, with never-say-die attitudes shown by all players. Torquay began the game with only 10 players and no keeper, and we took advantage of this to score the only goal of the game in the first few minutes. A quick and accurate pass out of the midfield defence to the right corner, and then a pass across the front of the goal found Emma A there to swoop on the ball and put it in the empty net. Newtown continued to work well together with Emma, Jessie  and Kellie continually putting pressure on the opposition and giving it their all. Great position and growing confidence and ball control skills saw Sarah gain possession and pass to our advantage, and De and Kirsty worked back to gather the passes through from the midfield.

The midfield and back line held strongly throughout the game, closing down space for the Torquay forwards and not allowing them to dominate. Great co-operation and adaptability between Peta, Andie, Meg, Wendy, Tracey and Hillary created a seamless defence unit, and good position and marking of the opposition blocked many forward moves. We survived a number of Torquay short corners late in the game, and a scramble in front of goal, but the whistle blew with no further score on the board. Great work Spirit.


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