Otago U18 Teams Finish National Tournaments on a High


It was a great week for both of our U18 teams at the Vantage National U18 Tournaments last week. After initial training sessions were offered in February, we have seen all of our players grow through their respective campaigns, which both finished in some trying conditions. When you add the Mainland Cup into the mix, we can safely say that the awesome effort put in by the coaches, managers, parents, and players has been the key to the successes that our Otago teams had. 


Otago U18 Boys

Our Otago U18 Boys finished the week with a Bronze Medal. An awesome achievement from the lads who only went down 2-1 in their tough-fought semi-final against Canterbury. The team was resilient throughout the week. Needing to win the pool to reach a semi-final, they did so through two come-from-behind wins against Bay of Plenty and Waikato. They also clinically beat Auckland 2 (7-0) and Northland (3-0) to get their week going on the right note.

The 3/4 playoff, played in a deluge, was not short of requiring any resilience from the team either. With the match being relocated to St Pauls, the boys needed to ignore any upsets to their schedule and just get on with the hockey - which they did. After going down early in the first quarter, the team once again rallied under pressure and Jack Cotton scored in the 24th minute to make it 1-1 going into half time. The score would stay that way until the first minute of the 4th quarter, where Sam Gradwell put one in the net. Patrick Ward solidified the result by scoring from a Penalty Corner with five minutes to go. Otago win the bronze medal after a 3-1 victory.

Our biggest thanks to our coaches Jarrod Casey and Jolene Casey, and manager Rebecca McDiarmid for their efforts over the week. 


Otago 7-0 Auckland White (HT: 3-0)

  • Patrick Ward (7', 24'), Jacob Smith (29'), Daniel Torr (35', 44'), Thomas Meder (50'), Liam Black (59')

Otago 3-0 Northland (HT: 2-0)

  • Patrick Ward (7'), Liam Casey (9'), Daniel Torr (40')

Otago 2-1 Bay of Plenty (HT: 0-1)

  • Gus Holt (42'), Josh Stevens (49')

Otago 2-1 Waikato (HT: 0-1)

  • Jack Cotton (35'), Benji Culhane (47')

Semi Final: Otago 1-2 Canterbury (HT: 0-2)

  • Josh Stevens (36')

Bronze Medal: Otago 3-1 Hawkes Bay (HT: 1-1)

  • Jack Cotton (24'), Sam Gradwell (46'), Patrick Ward (55')

u18 boys wrap


Otago U18 Girls

otago girls team


Our Otago U18 Girls finished 13th-equal at the end of their week in the Capital - but the phrase "Don't judge a book by it's cover" certainly applies here. The girls had a tough couple of games to start the week - drawing with Canterbury B 1-1 and going down 3-2 to Wairarapa after they scored a PC after the full-time whistle. However they began to hit their stride in their game against regional counterparts Central Otago, eventually beating them 3-0. Heading into their final pool game, there were many outcomes still possible in the rankings, with the girls able to finish as high as second place in the pool. This match against North Harbour started with a bang as our Otago girls opened the scoring through Molly Loe in the 6th minute. Being resolute in defense throughout the rest of the first half, the girls were looking calm and absorbing the pressure from Harbour well. However a goal from Harbour two minutes before half time meant the teams would go into the sheds at 1-1. The score remained at 1-1 until the 53rd minute where Harbour scored again, and momentum gave them another to finish the game 1-3 to Harbour - not a bad result against the eventual winners! This result meant the girls would finish 4th in the pool and play-off for 13th for the rest of the week.

The girls had a point to prove from this point on. Wanting to show that they could finish strong - and they did. The first playoff game was against South Canterbury, scoring in the first quarter, and 3 quick goals in the final four minutes of the first half meant they headed into half-time 4-0 up. Not stopping there, the girls scored two goals in the 42nd minute and another in the 57th to runaway with a 7-0 victory. Onto the final game and the team turned up to a deluge much similar to what the boys faced up the road in Hamilton. Up against Tauranga and wanting to continue their goal scoring run, the girls piled on three goals in the first quarter before the match was abandoned. 'Officially' the match was abandoned, but we think the girls deserve the recognition for getting off to a flier! 

A huge thanks to team coaches Hymie Gill and Lily Le Brun, as well as manager Nicola Loe - thanks for making the week one to remember!


Otago 1-1 Canterbury B (HT: 0-1)

  • Molly Loe (57')

Otago 2-3 Wairarapa (HT: 1-2)

  • Charlotte McKenzie (19'), Molly Loe (37')

Otago 3-0 Central Otago (HT: 2-0)

  • Anabelle McKnight (3'), Ella Greenwood (22'), Demi McAlwee (51')

Otago 1-3 North Harbour (HT: 1-1)

  • Molly Loe (6')

Otago 7-0 South Canterbury (HT: 4-0)

  • Ella Greenwood (9'), Hannah Cormack (27'), Annabelle McKnight (28', 30', 57'), Louisa Kotkamp (42'), Jorja Dinan (42')

Otago 3-0 Tauranga (Match abandoned at quarter time)

  • Charlotte McKenzie (3'), Sophie Shallard (7'), Molly Loe (15')

u18 girls wrap

Otago Hockey would also like to thank all of our sponsors and supporters who helped make these tournaments happen.

Images thanks to BWMedia and Planet Hockey

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