HOCKEY Coffs Coast Division 1 heavyweights Urunga Thunda – with a team including players from the Nambucca Valley – are again the champions.
The men’s first division hockey grand final attracted a big crowd and proved to be a real nail-biter for the fans in the grandstand.
Urunga got off to a great start with an early goal to Aidan Neaves, and they looked to have the run of play for most of the first half.
Raids by Sean Lovering and Byron Auld, of Valla Beach, were numerous and had to be defused by the Beaches Green defence before they hit the half-time break.
Urunga came out of the half-time break looking for more of the first half while Beaches were looking for more composure on the ball.
But it was the Beaches team who seemed to have come out better, creating a good couple of early chances.
The Urunga defence, led by Ethan Hourigan, held firm though until Justin Alford swooped late in the game to slam home an equaliser.
The seconds ticked away and it looked like the game was heading to extra time when a wide cross came in from Urunga and found a striker whose initial shot on goal was brilliantly saved by Beaches keeper Michael Johns.
But he couldn’t keep the follow-up shot out from Aidan Neaves, who slotted the rebound into the back of the net with a minute left on the clock.
Urunga held on to the lead and sealed their third premiership in as many years.
Meanwhile, the Coffs Coast twilight hockey competition will start on October 11.
Names are being taken to form a mixed competition of juniors in mixed teams.
Games will start at 5pm and run to 60pm.
The seniors twilight hockey games will start at 6.30pm.
Both competitions will start on Wednesday, October 11.
Nominations are due in by Friday, September 22.
To enter a team or get involved email: firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 0438 221-849. All players must be Hockey NSW registered and will need a mouth guard and shin pads. A second comp may start on January 31 if there’s interest.
New life member
Congratulations to Urunga Hockey Club's newest life member Paul Donohue.
Paul’s many years of hard work for Urunga Hockey Club are greatly appreciated.
Paul joins the life member group with Neil Pengilly, Rhonda Smith, Liz Auld, Vicki Moore and Margaret Joyce.