Rain marred chances for hockey teams to shine
GLADSTONE under-15 girls representative coach Jill Mathison can't wait for her young charges to get a fair dinkum chance to prove the talent they have in the ranks.
Mathison hopes the Gladstone 1 and 2 teams which contested the recent hockey state titles in Brisbane will receive a better chance to showcase their skills on the representative scene after their campaign was marred by rain.
The Gladstone 1 team in particular suffered an injustice, with the shortened competition draw meaning they encountered only the strongest teams at the titles, missing the chance to improve their position against the other outfits.
Such was the inconsistencies of the competition that Gladstone 1 ended up playing off for 11th position while Mackay, a team Gladstone held to a draw, played for the top spot. Despite the setback, Mathison believes future junior outfits in the under-15 age group and older, as well as the Gladstone and District Hockey Association senior competition, will benefit from the decision to take two teams to Brisbane.
Mathison had trained all the players as one squad from April until they split into two sides shortly before the titles, at which point her husband Craig assumed the Gladstone 2 duties. She said rather than taking away a squad of 15, Gladstone hockey would benefit from having 25 players gain valuable representative experience.
Gladstone 1 finished with two wins, two draws and a loss while Gladstone 2 recorded two wins, a draw and three losses in their division.
Gladstone 1 goalkeeper Emily Hunt was named in the Queensland team which will compete at national titles next month with team-mate Jami Long named as a shadow for the side. Joanna Homan was selected for a state development squad.
Hunt also earned the honour of being Gladstone 1's player of the tournament with Jessica Bauer taking out Gladstone 2's equivalent award.