Defense on form for Kate
Illness and an injury couldn’t stop 14-year Kate Thomson from defending goals in the AAU Junior Olympics and helping her team win gold.
The Ngaruawahia teen has come back a winner from her first international competition where she played goalie for the Under 14 New Zealand inline hockey squad.
The team won two golds, one for a tournament round and another for the official junior olympics games held in Hawaii.
About 200 teams from around the world competed in the competition.
It wasn’t all smooth sailing though for the Hillcrest High School student as she became sick with a high temperature and had to bench herself.
And during the final against Australia, she clashed with another player injuring her arm.
‘‘My coach came to get the other goalie... [but] there was five minutes left and I wanted to play the full game... I wanted to finish what I started. ‘‘I was in pain... but yeah...’’ It was a solid effort as she walked away with a clean sheet in that last game winning 5-nil.
Kate said she never expected to get so far into the competition as it was only ever about the experience.
And it was a ‘‘scary’’ competing against the likes of Chinese Taipei, Columbia, Los Angeles and Hawaii. ’’[I was] nervous because I didn’t want to stuff up.’’