Ni­chol­son the star in Blades’ win

Townsville Bulletin - - SPORT -

TOWNSVILLE hockey prod­uct Mitchell Ni­chol­son has capped a re­mark­able rise up the goal­keep­ing ranks to lead Queens­land Blades to vic­tory in the open­ing round of the Aus­tralian Hockey League.

Ni­chol­son, Queens­land’s third- string goal­keeper, helped Queens­land de­feat New South Wales 6- 4 in Sydney on Satur­day.

Ni­chol­son will re­turn to the field for his sec­ond AHL game for Queens­land Blades against Can­berra Lak­ers in Can­berra to­mor­row.

His AHL de­but capped a re­mark­able sea­son for the Townsville Broth­ers ju­nior.

Snubbed by Queens­land un­der- 21 se­lec­tors ear­lier this year, Ni­chol­son was drafted to play for Tas­ma­nia at the Aus­tralian Un­der- 21 Cham­pi­onship in Au­gust.

He had the last laugh by help­ing Tas­ma­nia win its first Aus­tralian un­der- 21 men’s na­tional ti­tle.

And to top off the achieve­ment, Ni­chol­son was named the player of the fi­nal af­ter sav­ing three Vic­to­rian at­tempts in a penalty shootout, af­ter scores were tied 1- 1 at full- time.

Townsville prod­ucts Joel Rin­tala and Justin Dou­glas are also in the Queens­land Blades team, with Stephanie Ker­shaw and Han­nah Ast­bury in the Queens­land Scorchers women’s side.

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