Lee’s way to 700 games
AFTER almost 40 years and 700 games, one of New Norfolk Old Scholars Hockey Club’s most respected players has hung up the gear.
Lee Smith, 58, called it a day after playing her final game last Sunday against University at the Hockey Centre in Hobart.
And although the team went down 3-0, Lee — or Leeroy, as the goalie is better known — played at her usual best, saving many goals as she has done on so many occasions.
Lee finished off her hockey career alongside her daughter Sally Smith (430 games) and granddaughter 16-year-old Natahlia Smith, who played her first game with the team.
And to prove that the veteran hasn’t lost it, Lee took out the club best and fairest this season, an award she has won quite a few times before.
And when asked about grand finals, Lee couldn’t remember exactly how many she had played in.
She recalled losing five in a row — but then the team reversed the tide and won five in a row.
Lee’s most memorable moment came when playing in a premiership with Sally.
“Yes it’s been great to win grand finals, but being in the same side as Sally has been pretty special for me,” Lee said.
The pair are the longest serving mother-daughter combination in the club’s 50year history with 23 years in the same team.
What’s more, Lee even played up until she was five months pregnant with Sally — no wonder the pair share a special bond.
And Sally, who joined the team at the age of just 13, is quite the proud daughter.
“Mum would be up with the best of them in our grade and she’s 58!” Sally said.
“She hasn’t always been goalie. She was a field player and put her hand up when we lost our goalie.
“I’ve never known a player to go to goals and be just as good if not better — old Leeroy was a star in both!”
Lee was honoured with a presentation on her milestone at the club’s 50th anniversary reunion at the New Norfolk District Football Club rooms on Saturday night.