Hockey a big winner
A year of expanding both senior and junior competitions, starting a pro comp and extending its pitch led Nickol Bay Hockey Association to win sporting group of the year at the City of Karratha Community Sports Awards last Friday night.
The annual awards night held at the Karratha Leisureplex featured the announcement of eight award categories as well as some inspirational words from guest speaker, Australian basketball legend Michele Timms.
NBHA was awarded the overall best sporting group gong from a record pool of 10 nominees, out of which Karratha Water Polo Association and Nickol Bay Speedway also made the shortlist.
The hockey association’s juniors co-ordinator Steve Cook also won coach of the year.
NBHA secretary Angela Ballantyne said it had been a busy year of development for the committee but they were proud to see their hard work paying off now,
“(With) what we went to with the pro comp and the juniors, all of the increased participation, it’s been feeling like we are definitely on track,” she said.
“Fingers crossed we get a new pitch and we can do hockey the justice in the Pilbara that it needs done to it.”
Local soccer and BMX were also big winners on the night, each with two representatives claiming awards.
Karratha BMX Club members Alan Kurilowski and Jackson Tatham won the senior and junior sportsman of the year prizes respectively.
Meanwhile, the hard work of soccer club members behind the scenes was acknowledged, with Derek and Helen Wingeatt triumphing in the night’s most competitive category of volunteer of the year, which attracted 22 nominations, and referee Peter Southern being named best official.
Netballer Karolyn Hartung was awarded sportswoman of the year, and softball player Georgina Bushby won best junior sportswoman. Two long service in sport recognition awards were given to Cassie Perry and Karen Lombardo for 20 years of contribution each to local basketball and touch rugby respectively.
Timms spoke about her career in an entertaining question-andanswer session with City of Karratha club development officer Natalie May that covered how she got her start in basketball, her favourite playing moments and her upcoming induction into the Australian Basketball Hall of Fame.
She also spoke at a sportspersons breakfast and ran Karratha Basketball Association development squads clinics earlier in the day.
Basketball legend Michele Timms, back, third from left, with the 2016 City of Karratha Community Sports Awards winners.