The Grafton under-17 hockey side.
The Grafton under-17 hockey side.

Grafton lads chosen for squad

IN CONFIRMING the quality of players produced in Grafton, Josh Lollback, Simon Colgrave and Sam Anderson have been selected in the under-18 squad to contest the 2012 Australian Titles.

In addition, Simon Colgrave, Brent Russ and Darby Fahey were selected in the under-16 All Schools State squad, at the NSW under-17 boys State Hockey Championships, held in Bathurst from April 1-3.

The Grafton 1 team, competing in Division 1, had a hard fought game against Sydney 1 before eventually Sydney won 2-1. Games on Saturday morning were delayed for 75 minutes while a heavy Bathurst fog lifted.

In Grafton's next game Illawarra's quick passing game had them up 3-0 at halftime. Grafton fought back in the second half with a goal to Brent Russ, however, Illawarra ran out comfortable 5-1 winners.

Grafton faced Lithgow in their last pool game with Grafton 3-0 at the break, after goals to Sam Blanch, Brent Russ and James Filewood. Early in the second half, Sam Anderson threaded the ball between the goalies legs, then in heavy traffic inside the circle, Thomas Dougherty shot a quick pass across the face of the goal for Josh Lollback to find the back of the net.

Grafton kept attacking with Ryland O'Connell, Barney Howard and Harrison Smith prominent. Great teamwork soon had Grafton two on one with the keeper and Brent Russ laid the ball off for Sam McCarthy to score. Brent scored Grafton's last goal, the final score a convincing 7-0 win.

After missing the semi finals Grafton met with Macarthur 1 in the playoff for fifth position.

Keeper Simon Colgrave was injured at the end of the first half so Cal Clare changed into the goalie gear at the break. Grafton never hit their straps in this game and Macarthur ran out easy 8-2 winners after a Darby Fahey goal before full time. Players player award went to Sam Anderson and Mick Russ gave his coaches award to Cal Clare.

A combined Coffs Coast/Grafton team competed in Division 3. It was a strong start but they went down 1-0 to Illawarra 2 in their opening game. Strong performances came from Reece Amos, Luis Crane, Aidan Neaves and Jack Coombes in goals.

In their next game Coffs/Grafton went down 5-2 to a well drilled Dubbo outfit.

Coffs/Grafton put up a good battle against Macarthur 2. Unfortunately Macarthur scored some quick goals at the back end of the game with the 5-1 result not being a true indication.Coffs/Grafton saved the best to last, facing Wagga Wagga in a playoff for seventh position. Justin Alford scored two goals and Cameron McPherson one with Coffs/Grafton running out 3-2 winners.

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