Netballers standing out
Tokoroa’s top Under-17 netballers are proving their worth at the Netball NZ National Under- 17 Championships in North Harbour this week.
This is Tokoroa’s first venture into entering a team into the national championships and head coach Tanata Riki said they have certainly proved they belong. The young side started with other teams in a similar situation as bottom seed of the tournament but after just two strong days they look set to move into crossovers second in their seed.
The girls were placed in Section One with last year’s winners Christchurch, third placed Pukekohe, Papakura and Far North.
Riki said her team’s first hit up was against the defending champions and although they went down, it was a ‘‘good experience’’.
Second up Tokoroa took on Pukekohe in what Riki described as a ‘‘brilliant, nail-biting’’ encounter.
They went down by one point but the tables turned in their next game against second seed Papakura who Tokoroa beat convincingly 29- 23. Riki said results are unpredictable as that same side beat Pukekohe just the day before.
She said the points table indicates they will head into crossovers today in second seed ‘‘which is great’’.
‘‘We have another two hard days of crossovers and finals but everyone is starting to look and say ‘who’s this team?’.’’
The team, made up of players from all over the district, has bonded really well, she said.
The Tokoroa Netball Centre made a huge commitment to enter a team into the competition. Heather Williamson said it gives players an opportunity to make a mark with selectors nationally and within the region to view how good the players’ skills are.
Netballers in Tokoroa have given this team great support. A huge fundraising programme was undertaken to contribute to finances for travel, accommodation and new uniforms.
Riki is joined by co-coach Maylene Meroiti and manager Juanita Shadrock, both well established and competent netball strategists.
Team shooters are Myarnee Kingi, Bonnie TeMiha, Ambert Brown. Midcourters are Chantae WilsonJenkins, Paige Cuff, Cherish Simone, Tiare Manu.
Defenders are Reegan Ford, Makaia Riki-TeKanawa (Captain), Paris John and Danni Jane Umaki.
Results are available on the Tokoroa Netball Centre and mynetball.co.nz/events/results websites.