Grafton girls triumph
GRAFTON High School has more sporting success to celebrate this week, after the girls' open tennis team was crowned the New South Wales All Schools' champion.
Following on from its success in the NSW Combined High Schools competition, the team took on Illawarra Grammar School, which won the NSW Combined Independent and the NSW Combined Catholic Colleges championship.
The team of Brittany Huxley, Emily Allen, Rachel Fahey and Georgia Allen travelled to Rockdale, just south of Sydney, for the game.
Manager Kelly Adamson was thrilled with the girls' success.
"I'm really proud of the girls. They performed brilliantly," Adamson said.
"They've achieved something that hasn't been done for years and it's just fantastic for them."
The team started strongly, leading 4-2 after wins in both doubles fixtures and singles success to Huxley and Georgia Allen.
"We had to win one of the reverse doubles to prevent it going to countback," Adamson said.
And that the team did, with a win to Huxley and Fahey handing Grafton a 5-3 win.
"The girls were really excited," Adamson said. "It was Britt's final year, so it's great she went out on a winning note."
The games were played in stormy conditions, with the rain holding off just long enough.
"We're pretty lucky they won when they did, because this big storm came over straight afterwards," Adamson said.
"It was dark and windy during the games and just after we finished the heavens opened.
"If it came down any earlier we would've had to travel back down."
To cap an exhausting week, all four girls were part of the North Coast representative team that finished fifth in a regional competition in the days before.
"They played for North Coast for the three days beforehand, then backed up to play this final," Adamson said.
"As you can imagine, they were pretty tired by the end of the week but they were well in form."
The win caps a steady rise of fortune for the team, which placed second in the CHS final last year and third the year before.
"The team has developed well over the years, with two of the girls from 2010 playing in this team," Adamson said.
"Hopefully we continue the good form for a few more years."
Competition might not be over for them just yet, with Adamson awaiting confirmation on a national competition.
"Last year the state winners of the All Schools competitions across the country played off in a national tournament," she said.
"I've contacted the state convenor to find out if it's being held again, so it's just a matter of waiting to hear back from them now.
"The girls are more than ready to go around again."
It's been a hugely successful year for Grafton High School, which only last week was crowned state champions in the boys' and girls' open squash competitions.
"The success for the school this year has just been unbelievable," Adamson said.
"It's a real credit to all coaches across the region."