Woopi makes waves at state netball champs
AN UNDER 17s and an Opens team from the Lions Club Woolgoolga District Netball Association competed at last weekend's State Netball Championships in Newcastle.
The Under 17s contested the Division 2 competition and despite half of the team being a year younger, the girls stepped up.
Following 21 games and wins over teams including Hills District, Bathurst, City of Sydney, Hastings Valley and Queanbeyan, and an unlucky draw with second-placed Great Lakes, the Woopi team finished in a highly creditable ninth position.
For a team which only came together this year it was a great result.
The remarkable story of the championships must surely be the achievement of the Woopi Opens team.
Playing in the Open Division 1 Championship meant the girls were pitted against the best of the best, including teams from associations whose numbers of registered players are greater than the entire population of Woolgoolga.
With 20 gruelling games ahead, the team began the first day with a big loss to Newcastle and an unlucky one-goal loss to Charlestown.
Another loss in Round 4 to Randwick had Woopi on the back foot and with a big mountain to climb.
Not daunted by this, the Woopi girls won 11 of their remaining 16 games to surge up the ladder.
These fantastic results included wins over powerhouse associations like Wyong, Woy Woy, Baulkham Hills, Northern Suburbs, Lismore and Campbelltown.
This great performance in recording 12 wins saw Woolgoolga finish the championships in a magnificent seventh place, and second only to Hastings Valley as the highest-placed country team.
"It was wonderful seeing all of these great girls representing Woopi at this massive event and they all did themselves and our association proud," Woolgoolga District Netball Association president Sandra Thorpe said.
"The great results achieved by both teams is a fantastic bonus and Woopi Netball have well and truly marked our spot on the netball map.
"To see our Opens cement their position as the seventh best team in NSW is just so awesome."