A huge amount of learning and improvement, and a huge amount of fun.
That’s what Dubbo teams got out of the recent under 13s Hockey NSW Indoor State Championship at Orange.
Dubbo Hockey Association had a boys’ and girls’ side contest the respective Division 2 tournaments and both featured a host of players relatively new to the game.
The boys’ team scored a creditable one win and a draw from its five matches while the girls finished with just the one win to their name.
But Dubbo Hockey Association’s junior convenor, Julie Webber, said the carnival at Orange was about much more than results.
“There were a lot of really young kids who were new to it so Division 2 was a big task,” she said.
“But they improved heaps over the few days and always kept their chins up.
“They all got a lot out of it and came away with smiles on their faces. And that was the story we wanted to come out of it.”
While there was no dream run to the title for either Dubbo side, the attitude shown by all Dubbo players was something which made Webber and the association proud.
The boys’ side was awarded the ‘Play the Whistle’ prize for their sportsmanship shown throughout the three days of competition while two players from the girls’ team received high praise.
Lily Piras and Addison Chapman played every game for their team before backing up and helping the undermanned boys’ team in its matches.
It meant double the amount of games played at the championship. But Webber said you wouldn’t have known it as the standard of both players never dropped no matter which game they were playing in.
“The girls played on Friday, Saturday and Sunday with the finals around lunch-time and then the boys started from Saturday evening and played through until Monday,” she said.
“They played in both divisions which was awesome and they were very strong players in both sides.”
Craig Chapman coached the Dubbo boys’ side while it was Courtney Hogan who coached the young girls.
The big challenge for the coaches, Webber, and Dubbo Hockey Association as a whole is to have this young generation move through to the outdoor game and competition next year.
Plans are already being put in place for a bumper come-and-try day to be held early next year while the association’s winter competition will begin after Easter.
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The overall Division 1 winners of the NSW Indoor State Championship were Newcastle in the girls and Goulburn 1 in the boys.