Young hockey play­ers show prom­ise


Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - SPORT -

THE 2016 hockey sea­son has not even started but two young play­ers are al­ready send­ing omi­nous signs to the rest of the com­pe­ti­tion.

Fre­man­tle Hockey Club ju­nior Ethan Faulds and Vic­to­ria Park Xavier Hockey Club’s Ryan Pace, who will make the move to Fre­man­tle this sea­son, have kicked off their year with a bang af­ter win­ning gold with their WA team­mates at the U18 Na­tional State In­door Cham­pi­onships in Jan­uary.

It wasn’t an easy win, com­ing up against a more ex­pe­ri­enced New South Wales team in a gold medal match that ended reg­u­lar time tied at 5-all, WA win­ning the match in a dra­matic fi­nal shoot- out af­ter sink­ing 3 goals to 2. The vic­tory capped off a stel­lar few months for Ethan, who last year made his de­but for the Fre­man­tle men’s 1 team, de­spite be­ing only 16 years old.

FHC men’s vice-pres­i­dent Matt Al­lan said it was an hon­our for play­ers to pull on the black and gold of WA.

“The level of com­pe­ti­tion is su­perb and there are no easy wins, so to pick up the gold medal is tes­ta­ment to the tal­ent and spirit we foster in the west,” he said.

“Like any high per­for­mance ath­letes at their age, if they stay fit and fo­cused then there is a world of op­por­tu­nity ahead of them.

“They have the plat­form and the eye of se­lec­tors. They now need to main­tain the ded­i­ca­tion, con­tinue to im­prove and have that lit­tle bit of luck.”

In an­other big coup, the Fre­man­tle club has also signed on for­mer Aus­tralian rep­re­sen­ta­tive Matthew But­turini as the men’s 1 coach and for­mer Scot­land and Great Bri­tain in­ter­na­tional Niall Stott as the women’s 1 coach for 2016.

Pic­ture: Jon Hew­son

Ethan Faulds and Ryan Pace.


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