The Sirius Academy Year 10 and 11 girls combined to enter into the Yorkshire Carnegie Championships for Year 11’s at a very cold York Acorn RFC. With no fewer than eight year 10’s playing a year above themselves, the girls can hold their heads up high after competing against some very tough opponents. Being drawn in a league of 4 teams, the other three teams were Castleford High School, St Catherines and Huntington.
Castleford High School were first up for Sirius Academy, which they could have done without, as they have won the competition for the last two years and are a very strong outfit. The girls were dealt a huge blow in the first minute of the game, when influential Year 10 player Paris Turpin had to leave the field of play due to a knock to the head. Sirius never really recovered from this and conceded some quick tries. In the second half it was a much improved performance, with some good tackles coming in from Selina Thomsen, Georgia Garrod and Louise Turner. Sirius made some good yards with forwards Rebecca Giblin, Annesse Jessop and captain Natasha Wood. But Sirius gave the ball away in their own half a lot, which the Castleford team capitalised on at every opportunity.
Next up for Sirius was St Catherines (Calderdale) , and the girls had settled into their pattern of play and was causing all sorts of problems going forward, the introduction of Tayla Kemp was immediate as she made some strong runs and tackles. But again Sirius was their own worst enemy and although they found some good field position they just could not keep the ball for the full six tackles and knocked on twice near the opponents line. Josie McDonald and Shannon Armstrong put in some good tackles down the right hand side, and Sirius thought they had got a try of their own when Kourtney Turner broke away and went over the white wash, only for the referee to call the play back after an infringement from St Catherines, which really should have resulted in “play on”. But only two tries were conceded in this game and the girls were certainly making progress.
In their final game of the competition, Sirius came up against Huntington (Noth Yorks). By this time there were a few niggling injuries creeping in, but the girls did not give up and was happy to continue battling on. Georgia Garrod had come into her own in her new role at acting half back and was bringing in willing runners of Megan King and Melissa McCann on a regular basis. Courtney Thompson also returned in this game after sustaining a nose bleed in the first match, showing great courage and commitment. But it was not to be, and again Huntington capitalised on some of the errors by Sirius and it was an uphill battle from there on in.
The girls deserve a lot of praise for their efforts, in a very tough league, some of the girls were playing their first game of contact rugby league and with a lot of younger players, they should not be disappointed with their performance.
Special thanks to Natasha Pearson and Gemma Richal -Webb for travelling and supporting the girls.
Please congratulate the girls on their commitment, attitude and behaviour.
Squad: Rebecca Giblin, Paris Turpin (Yr10), Josie Mcdonald, Megan King, Annesse Jessop, Natasha Wood (capt), Louise Turner (Yr10), Kourtney Turner (Yr10), Courtney Thompson (Yr10), Selina Thomsen, Shannon Armstrong (Yr10), Georgia Garrod (Yr10), Melissa Mccann (Yr10), Tayla Kemp (Yr10).