Ladies First Team
By Rochelle Searancke
This is my second season of coaching the Women’s 1st team, and it was always my aim to take them out of their comfort zone and get them to realise that they can and are able to step up their level of play and skill base. As a team we have been rebuilding the way we think and the way we play. We have been lucky as a unit to have a strong spine of senior players who have embraced a new way of playing and welcomed new players into the fold as well.
Last season wasn’t so flash as we struggled to adapt to a new structure and a new mindset to both training and game prep. We were relegated to Division 2, which was probably one of the best things to happen to us. It made us work harder and want to play for each other and push for results. More players came to trainings, more people were putting their hands up to learn new things.
We also pushed for results in the Executive Plate, which accumulated in us making the final against Victoria University. Unfortunately, we didn’t quite get the win, but we knew we had improved and that’s what you want as a team.
We fought hard for the remainder of the season and were rewarded with promotion back into Division 1. Then we topped off the season with an end of year trip to Tauranga for the Tauranga Tournament and coming runner up in the plate competition there as well. A great finish to the year and a great weekend away. We’ll be back this year to go one step further.
This season we have made it our goal to improve across all facets of the game. We have trained smarter and built a culture within the team of striving to be more. Standing on the side line coaching these ladies this year, I’ve been able to hear the comments from partners and supporters alike. It has been really encouraging that our “fan base” has been growing and that they have been appreciating our way of play.
Our passing has improved, our talking has improved and the flow of the game has been beautiful to watch. Every game has had an improvement, and finishing 4th on the table after the first round has made this cold hearted old coach very happy and proud of her team.
We have proved this season that we’re contenders, we have the ability to get results and that’s going to attract new players which is going to make us improve. I feel lucky and privileged to have been asked to coach this talented team.