Sydney University’s First Grade women’s hockey team created history last week by becoming the club’s first team to win a Sydney Women’s Hockey League Metro I grand final.
The Students defeated Briars 3-1 on the Olympic Pitch at Homebush to add the major premiership to the minor premiership in NSW’s premier women’s hockey league.
Coached by Liam Dixon and Scott Barker, Sydney University were in control of the grand final from the outset, setting up a 2-nil half-time lead with goals from Hollie Webster and Cara Simpson.
When Nina Khoury scored Sydney University’s third goal five minutes after the break, they had one hand on the title. And they did it without centre-half Mathilda Carmichael, who withdrew after suffering illness in the days leading up to the match.
Having topped the ladder on 41 points from 12 wins, five draws and one loss during the competition proper, Sydney University booked their first ML1 grand final berth by accounting for Gordon 3-1 in the major semi-final.
Four members of the winning grand final team – Khoury, Carmichael, Webster and Georgie Morgan – have been included in the NSW team to contest the Australia Hockey League titles in Perth in October. They are members of the SUSF Elite Athletes Program.
Others on the EAP include Simpson, Sophie Boyle, Jamaya Ferguson, Emma Scriven, Fiona Tout and Georgie Forbes-Smith.
They make up the bulk of Sydney University’s team contesting the Australian University Games in Adelaide this week.
The Metro 1 grand final team included: Em Jones (goalkeeper), Georgie Morgan, Georgie Forbes-Smith, Katie Burgess, Fiona Tout, Mathilda Carmichael (in spirit if not body), Sophie Boyle, Annalyse Lister, Nina Khourey, Hollie Webster, Jamaya Ferguson (captain), Cara Simpson, Greta Hayes, Lucy Brown, Emma Scriven, Kalindi Commerford and Gill Bennett. Coaches|: Liam Dixon and Scott Barker.
Tout, Carmichael. Simpson and Dixon are former Sydney University Hockey Club juniors.
It was the fourth time in eight days that an SUHC team had faced Briars in a grand final, with the men’s Fourth Grade, women’s Sixth Grade and Under 13s all beating their neighbours in their respective grand finals the previous weekend.
The achievements reflect the hard-work, commitment and passion of the players and coaching staff and the continued development of the club’s Premier Squad during the past few seasons.
Under the leadership of the Director of Hockey, Barker, and with the support of the Sydney University Sport & Fitness Elite Athlete Program, SUHC provides one of the best club programs for elite female hockey players in NSW.
Indeed, 10 first graders are on the EAP program, undertaking the concurrent pursuit of academic and sporting excellence.
The team’s list of representative honours includes having four NSW Arrows representatives (Morgan, Webster, Khourey and Carmichael) and four members of the Australian Junior World Cup team (Carmichael, Khourey, Morgan and Simpson).