This year’s Country Championships did not disappoint. The weather was perfect, the venue was amazing, games were of high caliber – could it get any better?
With round games still in play come early Sunday morning, the wait to see who would be making a finals appearance late this afternoon was tense.
The team to watch in the future – City of Orange Youth Division. They proved to be the real deal. The clubs investment over the past 2 years into their junior program is definitely paying off. City of Orange Representative Director Joel Begnell can not wait to see what the future holds “It’s very rewarding for the club as we are starting to see success. We have invested into the future of the club by ensuring that our juniors have a competitive pathway, which has included sending teams to Vawdon Cup on a weekly basis and we have now started to invest in tournaments such as the Country Champs. In the future, we are hopeful that to send teams to Senior State Cup”
The Women’s Open was a battle of the Hornets Affiliates this year when Central Coast found themselves up against their neighbors, the Newcastle Knights. With Newcastle scoring early, Central Coast wasted no time with a quick reply. In an intense game that showed amazing balls skills, the game was tied twice before the Newcastle Knights sealed the deal and victory taking the game 5 trys to 4.
In the Men’s Open Division arch-rivals Wollongong Devils and Doyalson Dragons found themselves once again in a grand final showdown.
Wollongong Devils dominated the game early ensuring that Doyalson Dragons would have to work hard if they wanted to regain their title. With minutes left, the game stopped. It was if a sniper took aim at Doyalson player maker Scott Bundy, who had to be carried from the field and with the clock still ticking, the game looked to be in the bag for Wollongong until, Doyalson scored in the corner on the siren to take the game into a drop-off. Doyalson just received a lifeline, but Wollongong had other plans. With the game now into its 4th minute and 4 on 4 Wollongong saw a chance and took it taking the win 7-6.
Men’s Open A: Wollongong Devils (1) 7 def Doyalson Dragons 6
Player of the Final: Dean Springfield Wollongong
Men’s Open B: Wollongong Devils (2) 6 def. Wallsend 3
Player of the Final: Brody Fien Wollongong
Women’s Open A: Newcastle 5 def. Central Coast 4
Player of the Final: Tazmyn Luschnitz
Women’s Open B: Parkes Pumas 4 def. Central Coast 3
Player of the Final: Erin Naden Parkes
Mixed Open A: Wallsend 7 def. Mudgee 4
Player of the Final: Kurt Grogan / Amy White Wallsend
Mixed Open B: Forster Tuncurry 6 def Maitland 5
Player of the Final: Ben Chapman / Abby Whitton Forster Tuncurry
Mixed Snrs: Port Macquarie 7 def Newcastle 3
Player of the Final: Wayne Gleeson / Anna Gleeson Port Macqaurie
Men’s 20s: Central Coast Dolphins 4 def Port Macquarie 3
Player of the Final: Blair Dawson Central Coast
Women’s 20s: Nelson Bay 5 def Macksville 4
Player of the Final: Andi Law Nelson Bay
Girl’s Youth League: City of Orange 7 def. Wagga Wagga 2
Player of the Final: Josie Clarke City of Orange
Women’s 30s: Maitland 3 def Mudgee Mudcrabs 2
Player of the Final: Kadi Carr Maitland
Men’s 30s: NEwcastle City 5 def Wallsend 3
Player of the Final: Mark Cecil Newcastle
Men’s 40s: Nelson Bay 3 def Newcastle 4
Player of the Final: Andrew Paton Nelson Bay
Women’s 40s: Jerrabomberra Storm 3 def Wallsend 2
Player of the Final: Rachel Platt Jerrabomberra
Men’s 50: Deakin Thunder 3 def. Newcastle 2
Player of the Final: Bradley Squires Deakin Thunder
1st Newcastle Knights – 122pts
2nd Wallsend – 90pts
3rd Central Coast Dolphins – 65pts