GHA hold own at State

Un­der-13 boys do Grafton proud at cham­pi­onships

The Daily Examiner - - HOCKEY SPORT - Jar­rard Pot­ter jar­rard.pot­ter@dai­lyex­am­iner.com.au

HOCKEY BOYS: Up against a tough stan­dard of com­pe­ti­tion at the Hockey NSW Un­der-13 Boys Field State Cham­pi­onships in Ar­mi­dale over the week­end, the two Grafton Hockey As­so­ci­a­tion teams that made the jour­ney did them­selves proud.

GHA 1 fin­ished fourth in their Di­vi­sion 1 pool, while GHA 2 fin­ished third in Pool B of Di­vi­sion 2.

GHA 2 coach Brian Fel­ton said that in try­ing con­di­tions, both teams played ex­cep­tion­ally well.

“They held their own, they did us proud and ev­ery player put in 110%,” Fel­ton said.

“It rained on Satur­day and we had to play a cou­ple of games on the grass fields, and there were pud­dles on the grass which made things tough be­cause our field shoes aren’t de­signed for grass.

“It was very cold too, about eight de­grees, which added to the chal­lenge but the boys rose to the oc­ca­sion. There’s noth­ing neg­a­tive to say, it’s all pos­i­tive. Every­one was well be­haved and it was a re­ally good week­end.”

Fel­ton said the GHA teams were two of the

smaller teams in the com­pe­ti­tion, which added to the dif­fi­culty of their matches.

“Phys­i­cally the boys haven’t played that stan­dard of hockey be­fore, so it took a lot of work on their bod­ies, es­pe­cially given the size of their op­po­si­tion,” he said.

“They boys learnt team­work, they learnt hockey skills and they ben­e­fit from the com­pe­ti­tion from other teams. It’s a step up in dif­fi­culty from the lo­cal com­pe­ti­tion, and we were some of the small­est play­ers there, so it added a phys­i­cal chal­lenge ele­ment as well.”

An­other chal­lenge to over­come was the lack of game time the two rep­re­sen­ta­tive teams had be­fore the start of the tour­na­ment.

“Our main train­ing in Grafton was a bit bro­ken up due to wet weather, so we didn’t get in enough games in Grafton to bring the boys to­gether,” Fel­ton said.

“The first game they

played in the tour­na­ment was their first as a team, whereas other teams had been play­ing to­gether for three or four months as a

team.

“I was re­ally im­pressed and proud of how we pro­gressed, be­cause by our third game the boys had hit

their stride.

“The kids did Grafton proud and they did them­selves proud and it’s great ex­pe­ri­ence.”

They held their own, they did us proud and ev­ery player put in 110%. — Brian Fel­ton

PHOTO: BMT PHO­TOG­RA­PHY

TOUGH TASK: Ac­tion from a Grafton Hockey As­so­ci­a­tion’s Un­der-13 Boys team game played at Ar­mi­dale in the State Cham­pi­onships.

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