ALL AUSSIE ATH­LETE

So­phie cho­sen to rep­re­sent her coun­try in two sports

Bayside and Northern Suburbs Star - - FRONT PAGE - Re­nee McKe­own

BRACKEN Ridge ath­lete So­phie Conway is part of two All Aus­tralian U18 teams and will be faced with a tough choice later this.

The 18-year-old has ex­celled in both hockey and AFL how­ever training sea­sons and sched­ules are start­ing to clash and she will have to pick one.

“I have a lot of de­ci­sions to make at the end of the year,” Ms Conway said. “I love both sports, it’s my pas­sion.”

Play­ers for the AFL Women’s League must be 18 and this is the first year Ms Conway is el­i­gi­ble to be drafted for those teams.

Ms Conway said she re­turned from the AFL Na­tion­als on the Gold Coast a cou­ple of weeks ago and was sur­prised to be se­lected for the Aus­tralian squad.

“I was shocked, noth­ing like that had ever hap­pened. I have only re­ally started play­ing AFL; this is my sec­ond sea­son.”

In Septem­ber she will go to Mel­bourne for the Aus­tralian U18 com­pe­ti­tion.

In April this year, Ms Conway was vice cap­tain for the U18 Queens­land Hockey team which played in

Ho­bart.

“It was awe­some. We went away and came back with gold.

“It was also my first Queens­land num­ber one side: I’ve only ever made the num­ber two be­fore.”

How­ever it has been a dif­fi­cult year for the Bracken Ridge ath­lete, whose mother passed away in June af­ter bat­tling breast cancer for four years.

“It was emo­tion­ally ex­cit­ing (to be se­lected for the Aus­tralian teams) but I wished my mum could have seen it,” Ms Conway said.

“It’s my drive to do well be­cause of her. I use my sport to keep me go­ing but some days are harder than oth­ers.”

In the mean­time Ms Conway will jug­gle both sports while study­ing Crime and Jus­tice at TAFE be­fore mak­ing her de­ci­sion at the end of the year if she gets drafted.

She plays AFL with Zillmere Ea­gles and hockey with Val­ley’s Hockey Club.

PHOTO: RE­NEE MCKE­OWN

Bracken Ridge ath­lete So­phie Conway is in the Aus­tralian U18 teams for both hockey and AFL.

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