Home' The Mt Barker Courier : The Courier - 2016-01-26 Contents PAGE 12 – The Courier SPORT Tuesday, January 26, 2016
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By Kellie Bucco
A lengthy selection process
and months of training finally
culminated in a week long soccer
tournament in Fiji for a number
of young Adelaide Hills Soccer
players last month.
The players made selection in Football
Federation of South Australia (FFSA)
Regional Teams, with the FFSA fielding an
under 17 girls team, an under 15 girls team,
and for the first time an under 13 boys team
in the competition.
The competition was held in Fiji between
The process started earlier in the year with
the Hills players selected to participate in
the FFSA regional program through their
Adelaide Hills representative teams.
The regional program forms part of the
FFSA Elite Pathway, allowing talented
regionally based players the opportunity to
come together as a squad to access regular
training and also participate in a training
Players were selected from the squad to
form FFSA Regional Teams.
Additional weekend training sessions were
held during the following months, bringing
all the regional players together from as
far as Whyalla, Port Pirie, Mt Gambier and
the Riverland to train and play as a team,
including playing curtain raiser matches for
the Lady Reds.
The final stage being the Ultimate Fiji
Soccer Cup, a nine-a-side competition
played in December.
Hills Coach, James Kerr, has been
coaching with the FFSA and involved in the
regional program for a number of years and
ran regular training sessions at Underdale
for the Fleurieu and Hills Region players,
across all three age groups.
As well as training the Fleurieu and Hills
squad, Kerr coached the under 15 girls
team, while Tony D’Agostino coached the
under 17 girls team, and former Adelaide
United player, Christiano Dos Santos,
coached the under 13 boys team.
As part of the program, each of the teams
collected goods in the lead up to the
tournament in order to donate them to a
local Fijian village.
For the three Hills players in the boys
under 13 team, it was an opportunity to gain
support from their own club the Adelaide
Hills Hawks, with players from the club
donating their playing shirts for the cause.
The visit to a village was one of the
highlights of the week, allowing players the
opportunity to reflect on the equipment and
facilities they enjoy at their own clubs while
they supported those less fortunate.
Together with the three Hills boys players,
there were six Hills girls players that made
selection in the FFSA regional teams.
All three teams enjoyed success, with the
under 15 and under 17 girls teams finishing
second and the under 13 boys team
finishing third in the competition.
Players found the conditions tough, playing
in hot and humid weather against very
physical teams, and in some cases much
The tournament attracts teams from the
eastern states of Australia, as well as
NZ, and forms part of the national player
selection for the Fijian teams.
There were many exciting moments
throughout the week long tournament and
the under 13 boys team nominated their last
game of the tournament as the best.
Hills player Finn Sanderson scored a
brilliant goal in a tightly contested match
against NSW team, IFG, to win 1-0.
A presentation dinner was held at the end
of the tournament where there was further
success for three Hills players, who were
named in ‘Allstars’ teams.
Selected by a panel of coaches, nine
players from both the boys and girls teams
were named as All Stars for the three age
groups, with Esther Heywood-Smith named
in the under 17 All stars and Eli Petersen
and Finn Bucco named in the under 13 All
In total there were six South Australian
players named as All Stars, making it a
proud moment for coach Kerr, who had
trained all six SA players in his Fleurieu and
Hills regional squad.
Ultimate Fiji Soccer Cup 2015
Echunga Netball Club is shooting goals in
the early stages of planning for the 2016
season with exciting news and innovations
being put into place.
Leslie Vears has stepped away from the A-grade
coaching role after three seasons of top three finishes.
The club has appointed experienced strength and
conditioning coach Darren Wasley to take charge of the
A-grade in 2016.
Wasley’s role will commence on the February 4, as the
preseason program gets underway for all seniors and
Under 17s players.
Encouraged by a coaching stint in the Mid Hills
Summer competition, Wasley is excited to be taking on
the challenge of a winter season, as well as working with
the players under him.
The experience of Felicity Duffield is being used by the
club as a foundation for their new Junior Skills Session
pre-season program, also commencing on the February
Sessions include ball handling, footwork, attacking,
defending, shooting, as well as general areas pertaining
to their netball careers.
A-grade players along with experienced coaches will
be conducting the sessions for the 11, 13 and 15 age
Echunga will continue to promote to its players the Mid
Hills Representative and Mt Lofty Regional pathways,
always proud of the representation that the club achieves
in those competitions.
The upcoming season promises to hold new challenges,
with the club striving for success in all areas with these
For further information email echunganetball@
Echunga’s new era
Adelaide Hills Players. Back Row (from left) Coach James Kerr, Meg Littler, Sarah Chappel, Esther
Heywood-Smith and Eli Petersen.
Front Row (from left) Emma Jacobs, Mikayla Eastwood (holding Adelaide Hills JSA Shirt), Finn
Sanderson, Finn Bucco (Absent - Courtney Mitchell).
Finn Sanderson (left) controls the ball during the under 13 final game of
the tournament. Sanderson scored the winning goal during the match.
Echunga A-grade captain Jade Vanzo (left) and Mid Hills A-grade best and fairest Felicity Duffield
welcome new A-grade coach Darren Wasley.
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