As the hockey season progresses, it is already apparent how much teams are improving and beginning to work together.
Under 8 Mixed
Newtown Strikers vs Torquay
On a clear morning Strikers started with a bombardment of attack from Torquay. There was lots of excellent defending in the 1st half with Sophie and Casper making some great tackles in defence. Victoria played really well in her first game as did Oscar with lots of shots of goal, and scoring a goal – well done! Torquay were a strong outfit but Strikers ran and chased hard.
Casper defended strongly and Georgia did some fantastic running forward to support the attacking plays. Coach Maggie was very pleased with the team’s effort, encouraging them to continue spreading out!
Newtown Spirit – Bye
Newtown Spirit had a bye this week, but that gave us a chance for a practice match against the mums of the team.
Olivia, Heidi and Nina showed excellent awareness and focus on the ball. Great passing and running to space saw many consecutive passes, moving the ball well over the whole field. Great recognition of the best positions to create options for team mates got them into goal scoring positions on many occasions. Well done girls.
Under 10 Mixed
Newtown Strikers vs Kardinia 3-0
Newtown Spirit vs Torquay 0-3
Newtown Spirit continues to improve each week and as confidence grows, the level of teamwork and co-operation is increasing. Great defence by Pat, Lucy, Braxton and Lucas with sticks on the ground, blocking many of the Torquay advances. Pat’s disposal from the back line gave our midfield and forwards opportunities to move the ball forward.
With Poppy, Maia and Hamish in the midfield in good position and working well together, Spirit were able to create some momentum and repel some of the Torquay attacks. Torquay continued to advance and put pressure on our defence, but a tendency to play down the middle meant the ball returned quickly to our defence pressure zones. Score at half time was 3-0.
The second half saw continued strong defence and with more 2nd and 3rd attempts to gain possession from Hamish and Albie, Newtown Spirit began to create some forward moves. There were a number of entries into the attacking circle and some unlucky chances at goal just missed. Will was again in great position on the wing, and was able to send the ball forward to Spirit’s advantage. Proactive defence in the second half saw Lucy block a 1 on 1 attack from Torquay and send the ball back for Spirit to move forward. Tom and Braxton set up a number of attacks working together down the right wing, and Eliza worked hard in the centre.
The scoreless second half shows the determination of the Spirit team to keep working hard until the end, and we look forward to the next game.
Best Team Player Awards to Will, Albie and Hamish.
Under 12 Mixed
Newtown Strikers U12 v Kardinia White 5-0
Right from the first whistle Newtown nominated the match and showed some great passing skills and use of space. It was clear that the team had been listening well to coach Darren’s feedback from previous weeks and put into play some of the skills.
Between them Zac and Sofia put away 4 goals in the first half. The energy levels slowed down a little in the second half but there was still some lovely passing and a couple of great switches across the field of play. With one more goal before the final whistle, the team really put on a great display of hockey. Hopefully the team continue to go from strength to strength next week.
Newtown Spirit vs Torquay 0-4
Spirit had a tough game this week up against Torquay. We had had a new player Jett join our team this week for his first game of hockey, well done Jett!
Thank you to Bella for being our goalie this week and Maddie for helping out on the field. The kids all ran hard again this week, moving the ball around the field, and
trying to find scoring opportunities. We got a few forward thrusts but were not quite able to get one across the line. Our defence had a lot of work to do, with the Torquay forwards putting on a lot of pressure, and it was good to see our forwards rolling back to help out the back line.
This week we were trying to move the ball too much through the middle, and although doing some great work in defence, we were handing the ball back to the Torquay attackers in the middle, making it hard work for our defenders. Next week’s focus will be to get back into doing what we were very good at last week and moving the ball wide when coming out of defence, and only moving into the middle after clearing the congestion.
The kids again played out the game right to the final whistle, and the entire game was played in good spirits. Look forward to seeing you all at training on Thursday night, where we can do some more work on moving the ball out of a congested back line.
Under 14 Mixed
Newtown Strikers vs Geelong Jaguars 4-0
What a great day, so nice to play in the sunshine. The team achieved exactly what we set out to do ….. start our attack from defence which was so exciting to watch. Tessa was Captain this week and lead the team through some great play and a 4-0 win over the Geelong Jaguars, with three goals to superstar Eoin and one goal to Nate.
Strikers worked really well as a team this week, with some great hockey played. A great job by Sienna player her first game with the team. Coach’s best on ground this week was Chloe, who played her position on the wing really wide and opened up the field. Then she tried a new position as Inner and was able to switch effortlessly from defence to attack.
The pizza night after training was a great team building night, enjoyed by all.
Newtown Spirit – Bye
Under 17 Mixed
Newtown Strikers vs Kardinia White 1-10
Starting the game with 7 players was going to be a challenge for the Strikers against a full Kardinia White team, but our Newtown players are to be congratulated with the tenacity and having a “never give up” spirit. Not wanting to forfeit, each player ran and challenged for the entire game. Amber was a welcome addition just before half time, to provide another option wide, for players to use the side lines and penetrate our forward line.
Our full backs, Charlie and Bailey superbly helped to repel many incoming attacks, even though they were consistently outnumbered in the D. Supported by Ruby, Tom and Mitchell, they held Kardinia to a 4-0 half time score.
With the generous offer from Kardinia to loan their keeper for the second half, it freed up our players to make many more attacking moves. A wonderful intercept by Ella and stellar passing by Mitchell to Tom, set up our only goal for the game. Nearly scoring a further 2 times going forward was great work by Gemma and Ella to position themselves well inside the D.
A break out game by Ruby, who continued to pressure, create opportunities and tackled strongly, gaining great confidence playing at a higher level.
A final game score of 10-1 in Kardinia White’s favour.
Newtown Spirit – Bye
Division 1 Women
Newtown Falcons – Bye
Division 2 Men
Newtown Falcons vs Golden Plains 4-0
Division 2 Women
Newtown Strikers vs Golden Plains 5-0 (forfeit)
As Golden Plains had to forfeit the match (not enough players yet), this was a scratch match, where the score was actually 0-10. However, as the ‘Golden Plains’ team included 4 Division 1 players, an Olympian (Deb B) and a HG Sharks goalkeeper, the Strikers team was up against some tough opposition.
The speed of the opposition players in moving with and without the ball made it difficult for Strikers to keep up the pace, and looser marking saw Golden Plains players in good position in front of goal. Quick passes to unmarked players resulted in most of the goals scored. Tracey and Hillary made some nice disposals from the back line, and were in great position to cut off the advance to goal.
Newtown Strikers were able to confront the advance in the midfield with Hannah, Andie, Lozza and Emma A doing some great work to gain possession and send the ball forward for Strikers. Great running in the forward half by Deanne, Deb and Georgie saw the ball make it to the circle a number of times, and there were a couple of chances which very nearly resulted in a goal. Kate seems to have found her spot in centre, creating some great options for team mates and passing wide for players to run onto. Emma T, Carly and Stevo were adaptable, working hard in whatever position they found themselves in.
Given the format of the women’s competition this year, this match may provide us with a yardstick as to what we might expect against D1 teams, and allow us to plan some strategies to meet the onslaught. Well done everyone.