Hockey girls set hot pace

Kapi-Mana News - - SPORT - By KRIS DANDO

The Tawa Col­lege girls’ first XI hockey team is back into the pre­mier 1 grade for the first time in eight years.

The girls have had a solid sea­son, los­ing just two games.

One was a 4-1 de­feat by Welling­ton Girls’ Col­lege in the first pro­mo­tion-rel­e­ga­tion game, but Tawa re­bounded quickly in their sec­ond bite.

On June 13, Tawa scored in the first half against Sa­cred Heart at the Na­tional Hockey Sta­dium in Welling­ton and hung on for the win to earn pro­mo­tion.

‘‘What we’d achieved didn’t hit us straight away, but it’s sink­ing in now,’’ cap­tain Sophie Bil­tonBur­don said.

‘‘It will be a step up, but we’re ready. It will re­ally help us pre­pare for na­tion­als in Septem­ber.’’

Sophie said the team’s strengths lay in hav­ing an ex­cel­lent de­fen­sive line and goal­keeper in Aimee Price and a tough spine in the mid­dle of the park.

Team unity and goal- set­ting were also rea­sons for Tawa’s suc­cess, she said.

Aimee Price said pre­mier 1 hockey would be stronger and faster, but Tawa were look­ing to do more than just stay up.

‘‘The skill level is higher and it’s a good chance to learn from these other teams,’’ she said.

The near fu­ture bodes well for girls’ hockey at Tawa, be­cause only three play­ers are leav­ing school at the end of the year.

Photo: KRIS DANDO

Pre­mier league: Clock­wise from top left, Danielle Wat­son, Gemma Board, Sophie Bilton-Bur­don and Aimee Price are key cogs in the Tawa Col­lege girls’ first XI hockey team.

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