Indoor Hockey Team reaches national finals
On Sunday 4 December, the U18 and U16 indoor hockey teams both played in the Regional Finals. The standard of hockey at both competitions was extremely high and the teams really were competing against the best. The U16s won two group games and lost one meaning they finished second in their pool advancing to the semi-finals where they faced St Georges. With a tough game ahead to try and reach their first indoor National Finals they were more than up to the task and played extremely well. After having a flick saved we then went down two goals in quick succession before pulling one back to see the game finely poised at 2-1 to St Georges at the half time break. Playing well and ready to get goals back the team were spurred on for the second half and started very well. Unfortunately, St Georges again nicked two goals in quick succession leaving the team with some work to do; in indoor hockey, goals can be scored in a matter of seconds so all was still to play for. We subbed the goalkeeper off and went to 6 outfield players to put pressure on and score some goals - the team gave everything and pushed as hard as they could but it just was not to be and St Georges took the win. The team were the highest achieving state school and could not have done more – a tough day and some outstanding hockey was played.
The team was: Mia Lasocki, Katie Webb, Katie Sanders, Katie Jurdon, Maddy Peacock, Sophie Willis, Issy Harris-Evans, Ami Robinson, Imi Smith and Imi Relf.
The U18 team had a very small squad so the day was going to be an exhausting ask just looking at the light numbers we had compared to other teams. They started the day very well with a 3-1 win before taking on Ardingly, who had been playing some excellent hockey and looking very strong. The team rose to the challenge and were 3-1 up with 6 minutes to go before conceding another leaving the game tensely balanced at 3-2. Ardingly were on the attack with seconds on the clock only for the final hooter to go and the team thought they had done it until the umpires made an extremely controversial, and incorrect, decision to award a short corner after the full time hooter had gone. Amongst much controversy, the Ardingly scored their final corner and the game finished 3-3. With one game to play it was about winning the game and then trying to win it by more than Ardingly won theirs by in order to top the pool and give themselves a better semi-final draw. Goals were what was needed and goals it what the girls got - a 6-1 win in their final game against Wellington seeing them top the pool and draw a very good Borlase side in the semi-final; a repeat of last year. With the players already exhausted after battling throughout the pool stages it was time to dig deep again and put themselves in the history books once more. As the team rose to the occasion yet again, something they do extremely well, they went 2-0 up in a matter of minutes leaving Borlase looking very shell shocked. With indoor hockey able to change in seconds there was plenty of work still to do as proven when Borlase got one goal back. Borlase subbed their goal keeper to bring an extra outfield player on to try to regain the lead. The team had to defend extremely well to keep 6 field players at bay to their five and as they got possession they were able to break and slot the ball home into an empty net- 3-1 BHS. Borlase continued to press hard and the team had to work extremely hard with exhausted legs, minds and bodies to keep their lead but that they did. A 3-1 win and a place in the final and therefore National Finals had been achieved.
They went on to lose the final but after exhausting themselves throughout the day and have already achieved what they wanted to, they could give no more. A remarkable achievement and testament to the girls’ hard work, commitment and their passion to win for each other and the school. They will be the only state school at the National Finals on 14/15th January. The team was: Sophia Everitt, Abby Wagge, Jenna Wyllie, Lauren Torley, Caroline Spence, Lauren Gallagher, Jade Quelch and Beth Wagge.
As a school we now have the U16 outdoor hockey team at National Finals and the U18 indoor hockey team at National Finals - the only state schools at both competitions.
This is outstanding and the girls should be extremely happy with all they have achieved so far this year- they are committed and work extremely hard to achieve what they can and I am very proud of every single one of them.