North Otago’s youngsters acquitted themselves well at the Finch Rose Bowl tournament in Oamaru at the weekend.
The home side fielded the greenest squad at the women’s tournament but managed to reach the final.
Veteran player Jody Robinson, who plays club hockey in Dunedin and represented her home province as a player of origin, said North Otago was initially not going to field a team in the tournament but managed to whistle up enough keen girls and women.
A highlight was the performance of the young players, including River Cunningham (14), Fenella Ballantyne (14) and Nadine Jellyman (13), Robinson said.
“The young ones learned heaps. They needed to step up, which they did, and I believe they showed their worth.
“Nadine played in goal and played her heart out, saving many goals. She was our player of the tournament.”
North Otago opened with a 1-0 win over South Canterbury Under-18, Bridget Johnston scoring a goal on the post.
Robinson and Melissa Wouters then grabbed goals in a 2-2 draw with the Southern Under-18 Development team.
North Otago played Central Otago twice on Sunday, losing the round robin game 4-0 and the final 5-2. Aoife Smyth and Grace Brosnahan scored North Otago’s goals in the final.