Ellie shows she has touch of class
By TONY WHITE
YAMBA Public School student Ellie Starkey has been selected for the NSW touch football team to compete at the national championships in Darwin next month.
The 12-year-old Year 6 athlete was picked as one of the best 12 in the State after her performance for the North Coast team that contested the NSW touch football carnival in Sydney.
The other North Coast team members selected for NSW were Sharon McGrady (Coffs Harbour) and Simone Smith (Port Macquarie).
Three other Yamba Public students: Gemma Cahill, Emily Hardman and Briony Helisma, were also members of the North Coast team that finished runner-up to North West at the state titles.
The team was coached and managed by Yamba Public School sports master Ian Clifford.
North Coast have made the final of the state titles for the past three years, a great performance considering distance problems prevented the team from vital lead up training runs and trial matches.
On the first day North Coast defeated Sydney North (last year's semi-finalist) 5-0, then staged a dramatic comeback in the second game, where they were 3-0 down with 15 minutes to go to draw 3-all with Sydney West.
North Coast went through day two undefeated -- beating Polding 2-1, Sydney South West 5-1 and Western 2-0 to top its pool.
In the semi-final, North Coast won a hard-fought game against last year's champions South Coast 2-1.
After trailing North West for much of the final, North Coast fought back to level only to go down narrowly when North West scored a late try against the run of play.