SPAR KZN Schoolgirls’ Hockey Challenge
Durban Central Regional: Sunday 10 March
The only team to keep their 100% record, Durban Girls’ College took the honours for the ninth time at the Durban Central Regional of the SPAR KZN Schoolgirls’ Hockey Challenge on Sunday 10 March.
It was not all plain sailing for College who met host school, Durban Girls’ High School in the regional final. The defending champions had to work incredibly hard for their only goal. Defending like trojans, Durban Girls’ High boldly stood firm again and again with relentless attacks by College.
It wasn’t until midway through the final that the feisty, intrepid Bulelwa ‘BB’ Mzimela managed to slip one over the line for College. Mzimela was in the right spot at the right time for a pass flying from the right, straight across the goals, finding her outstretched stick near the left post, the ball changed direction. Her tournament winning goal insured that the hardworking College team advance through to the Grand Finals in July, the only team to have made an appearance every year in the nine year history of this tournament.
On the way to the finals, Durban Girls’ College met St Henry’s in the first semi-final. College quickly got into their offensive game with a 3 nil triumph. Goal scorers for College were Amanda Holmes slotting in a flick off a short corner, BB Mzimela knocking in the second off a pass and Pippa Meek capitalising off some messy play in the goal mouth.
In a wonderfully equal yo-yo of a game, Durban Girls’ High School took on Maris Stella in their semi-final. The game bounced between the two goals, with both teams nearly scoring, but magnificent defence on both ends saw the game level with no goals at the conclusion. Being a semi-final the game needed a winner, so it progressed to a penalty shoot-out. Tamika Pillay, Latoya Boon and Tianna Anderson all weaved their magic for Girls’ High and found the back of the box. Maris Stella’s Holly Chellin and Sarah Proctor slotted in their attempts easily, but unfortunately for Maris Stella, Kelsey Wassink’s flick found the pads of Asanda Ncube in goals for Girls’ High, giving the hosts a 3-2 advantage and an opportunity to meet the defending champs.
Stand-in Coach for College, Mike Cullen stated after the victory, “With only 20 minutes, it is always a bit of a challenge, a lottery because one goal against you and you are under pressure. On the whole, I thought our girls played really well, we moved the ball nicely, we managed to score lots of goals. We also did a lot of things that we talk about which from a coaching point of view is pleasing.”
Cullen helped College while their usual coach was away cycling the Cape Town Cycle Tour, shared his favourite moment of the day: “Winning – without a doubt! Cos the team (myself included) were all under an incredible amount of pressure being the only team to have claimed the title of this region,” a supremely chuffed Cullen said.
Being acknowledged for her unfaltering presence with the whistle, Melissa Calitz from St Henry’s was awarded Umpire of the Day.
The fourth team to earn their ticket to the Grand Finals, Durban Girls’ College join the two Pietermaritzburg teams that have already earned their spots. The first team to qualify was St Anne’s College (Pietermaritzburg North Region) followed by Epworth School (Pietermaritzburg Central Region) and then Crawford La Lucia (Durban North Region).
The next regional returns to the 3 Schools Trust for the Durban South Regional on Sunday 7 April, with defending champs, Amanzimtoti High School hosting the tournament. Thereafter, five more regionals remain in the 2019 KZN tournament.
1 Durban Girls’ College, 2 Durban Girls’ High School, 3 Maris Stella, 4 St Henry’s, 5 Port Natal School, 6= Ridge Park College, 6= Inanda Seminary, 6= Inanda Ntumzuma KwaMashu (INK), 9 Brettonwood High School
For more info like the tournament’s Facebook page or follow their Instagram account.
Durban Girls’ College Do It Again!
SPAR KZN Schoolgirls’ Hockey Challenge