Valleys make history in JHC
RUGBY LEAGUE: Gladstone Valleys Rugby League Club have created history by achieving a highest-ever finish that a local club has done in the Jason Hetherington Cup.
The Valleys' under-12 team finished third out of 35 teams which competed.
Mackay Magpies defeated Cap Coast Brothers 12-8 in the decider, but to finish third in a state club-based competition from which the bigger clubs have a larger talent pool of players to choose from is no mean feat.
Valleys won seven from eight minor round games and that was enough to earn them the double chance.
Cap Coast inflicted Valleys' its second loss in the first semi-final against Cap Coast 12-4 before rebounding to win its next two semi-finals.
They were an 8-0 whitewash against Gladstone Brothers and Valleys backed it up with 12-4 triumph against Proserpine-Whitsundays Brahmans.
That set up a clash against Mackay Magpies for a spot in the grand final.
But unfortunately the Magpies were superb in defence and this did not allow the Valleys team to score in a 4-0 loss.
Valleys were also disallowed in what would have been the first try of that match had it not been adjudged a forward pass.
Valleys played 12 games of footy from Friday morning through to Sunday and junior club president Steve Marker said the team received terrific support on and off the field.
"We had a number of U11 players who have helped us out and had two boys from Calliope helping us out a swell,” he said.
"The way they conducted and held themselves together was great.”
Marker said some of the more impressive wins was a 28-0 against Biloela and a hard-fought win against a strong Kawana Dolphins team.
Hoani Harris was also named best and fairest out of the five-team pool one category.
"Hoani is just a self motivator and it's no wonder he has got the results that he has,” Marker said.
"(But) it was a great effort from coach Adam Alexander and his coaching staff and all the boys should be very proud of their efforts and for the way they carried themselves over the three-day carnival.”
JHC founder Brian Pengelly said it was a massive success with a lot of volunteers' input.
"It's been great with just the impact of teams coming from all over the state says enough for the carnival and how successful it has been over the last nine years,” Pengelly said.