9 March 2020
The U16 hockey team at The Queen’s School in Chester is once again celebrating being crowned the National Tier 2 Champions for the second consecutive year.
The squad travelled to The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, Lee Valley, London for the two day event, which started with competing in the semi-final against Marlborough College on the first day.
Head of Hockey Martine Green said: “Arriving at The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park brings its own awe-inspiring thoughts and develops the jangling of nerves. Our advantage was that six of the girls played last year and they were able to support the younger members of the squad. The girls dream became a reality and their hard work paid off and I could not be more proud of them all.”
Queen’s started off really well in the semi-final and dominated the game, then against the flow of play went 1-0 down. Nerves were playing their part but by half time the score was set at 2-2 and the girls had all to play for. The second half Queen’s played like a different team, dominating in midfield and defence, causing havoc with their speed and determination up front, which led to them winning the game 4-2.
The final was on the Olympic pitch the following day against Uppingham who were tenacious opponents.
Captain Esther in Year 11 said “Walking onto the Olympic pitch, leading out the whole team as captain with our names being called out over the tanoy was a feeling I will truly never forget.”
Queen’s dominated for large parts of the game and twice found themselves ahead but Uppingham kept getting themselves back into contention, levelling the scores to 2-2. Queen’s then found themselves 3-2 down with the final whistle approaching before captain Esther made a break count, scoring a terrific goal to level the score once more. An end to end game was surely exciting for spectators but took its toll on the players. With a minute to go Queen’s has a short corner, they scored and thought they had sealed victory to see the umpires debating and suggesting the shot was too high so didn’t count. The full time whistle went and the girls were into a penalty shootout.
The coaches were confident of victory and the girls believed as five of them stepped up to take penalties. Emma dominated in goal and with Queen’s ahead 3-0 in the shootout no more penalties were needed. A convincing and deserved victory to crown Queen’s U16 Tier 2 National Champions for the second year in a row!
Lucy in Year 11 said “It was a fabulous experience and I felt this time we went with the extra confidence due to our great win last year, the team really bonded well over the couple of days.”
Tallulah in Year 10 said “National finals was the most amazing experience that has taught me so much. Everyone was so supportive of each other every step of the way and I couldn’t have asked for a better group of girls to win Nationals with. It was an honour to be part of the team and something I want to experience again.”
This latest success follows the impressive performance of Queen’s Indoor Hockey teams, who were recently celebrating a clean sweep in the Chester and District and County competitions, winning across all age groups, something that has never been done before.