Fighting their way to win
The Central Otago under-14 girls representative football team has come back from the Under-14 Girls South Island Tournament in Christchurch with a strong third place finish. The team, made up of players from Queenstown, Alexandra, Wanaka and Cromwell, fought hard on the first day of competition. They beat Canterbury Red 3-2, but lost to North Canterbury 1-0. The second day of competition saw the Central Otago team notch up two wins, beating Nelson 1-0 and South Canterbury 3-0. That was enough to place the team in the semifinals. However, a tough game against Canterbury Black dispelled their hopes of winning the competition, after the opposition scored a goal in the final minute of the game. Central Otago then played off for third and fourth against Canterbury Red and held a one-goal lead throughout the game, but the game was levelled in the final minutes after Canterbury Red scored. A penalty shoot out followed and Central Otago goal keeper Julia Driehuis, from Alexandra, defended Canterbury’s attempts at goal to earn the team third place. Julia’s sister, Chantal Driehuis, earned one of the most sought-after awards at the competition, the Most Valuable Player of the tournament.