Belfast , Armagh and Games
Trip Start Nov 20, 2006
18Trip End Dec 14, 2006
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We then travelled to the Royal School Armagh to meet our new hosts for two nights - the Hockey girls will be billeted and the Netball girls in the Hotel with the staff.
The Royal School, Armagh is over 400years old. The netball girls had a tour of the school - the hockey girls went off with their billets. Sara, Pip, Katharine and Alex quickly discovered that their hosts had arranged for them to go to the school dance!
24th November The hockey girls were collected from The Royal School and we travelled to Banbridge Academy where a round robin of netball games had been organised. The first game was a mixed game v Banbridge Academy - we rotated the A and B Netball girls through the game. The final score was Banbridge 33 and Toorak 20. The second game was the B Team up against Sacred Heart College (TC 19 and SHC 23) and finally the A Team against the local champion team - Cooktown College. (TC 15 and CC 16)
Here are the game reports from the Netball Teams -
Irish Defence is good
We really think we should
Work on our defence,
The Loss of our game
If we keep it the same
We will never reach our aim
... of Victory.
Toorak Team 2
Toorak Team 1
Well .. the giants (otherwise known as the Cooktown girls netball team) entered the stadium and our thoughts of winning were squashed. They were 8 feet tall, Olympic Standard girls who played for Northern Ireland.
We were all warmed up and pumped, ready to tackle this challenge. The first few minutes we were shocked by the standard, but rose to the occasion and found ourselves only down by 2 after the first quarter. We had to work really, really hard but it paid off and we broke their centre pass twice. This was helped by brilliant defending efforts by Eliza, Lu D and Jess Brooks. Alex and Lu Sloan shot accurately from right around the ring, levelling the score leading into half-time. At the half-time break, Julie managed to Psych the whole team up and when the game re-started Sarah Ellis took some amazing intercepts which inspired the team to keep working hard. At one stage we led by 2 goals, and rivers of sweat poured off each of us.
The final score was 15-16. We lost :( but it was an incredible game by everyone! The team really lifted to the standard of the opposition. It was such an awesome game; one which we should all be proud of. We are the team of stars!
Meanwhile ... a couple of boys in the school developed a plan to get to see the 'Australian Girls' in their netball skirts .... they set off the school fire alarm!
The Phys Ed staff quickly worked out that there was not fire in the gym and turned off the alarms. The girls were not aware that the rest of the school were evacuated in the rain to the top oval whilst the school's emergency plan was put in place!
We really enjoyed the hospitality that was shown to us at the Banbridge Academy.
After the game we returned to Armagh. We had about 45minutes before we were due to be at the astroturf for the hockey game. We used that time to visit St Patrick's Cathedral. Armagh is known as the first location of the Catholic church in Ireland (St Patrick based himself in this area in his bid to 'civilize' the Celtic people.) The caretaker played the grand organ throughout the time that we were in the church. We were able to see Celtic crosses and relics from the region. The Church houses the regiment flags from some of the main wars that Ireland has been involved in.
We arrived at the astroturf to find that the day's rain had flooded the pitch. We returned to the Royal School, Armagh and mixed the two teams for a 5 aside indoor competition. Both school really enjoyed the fast indoor game.
Off to Dublin tomorrow!