13 Hockey stars selected for state teams

The South West tradition of producing quality hockey players has continued, with a long-list of South West Academy of Sport athletes achieving selection to state teams.

A whopping 13 young sports men and women from the academy have either just recently played for West Australian sides over east or are currently competing on the national stage.

Eight players wore the black and gold colours of WA earlier this month when they competed in under-15 teams at the Australian championships in New South Wales.

Meanwhile, a further five players are contesting the under-18 championships under way in Tasmania.

Adding to the strong South West presence in state teams is the inclusion of SWAS hockey assistant coach Lawrie Tylor to the under-18 women’s coaching team.

SWAS hockey head coach Russell Harvie said the South West had produced a lot of State hockey players over the years, so it wasn’t surprising that the names of locals were again appearing on state team lists.

“Exposure to playing senior hockey earlier and to strong levels of coaching across the region combined with about 10 previous years of ongoing development programs via SWAS and regional programs are contributing factors,” he said.

Harvie said the athletes had spent time in the lead-up to the tournaments fine-tuning team play, tactics and game practice.

“They will be facing strong, robust competition which is much quicker than previous age groups,” he said.

“The work ethic required and concentration levels needed are much higher than club hockey.”

The under-15 national championships ran from April 5 to 13, while the under-18 tournament kicked off on April 19 and conclude on April 29.

SWAS athletes and coaches in state hockey teams:

Under-15 girls: Emma Barrett, Charli Wicksteed, Emma Tinley, Megan Roberts, Ella Du Preez, Grace Shepherd.

Under-15 boys: Indee Elphick, David Wareham.

Under-18 men: Tom Harvie.

Under-18 women: Ashleigh Barbetti, Jacqui Hutton, Sophie Johnston, Meg Read. Assistant coach: Lawrie Tylor.