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National Touch League 2015 Preview

The 2015 National Touch League is steadily approaching with excitement growing around the country.  The event will feature 114 teams across 13 divisions, all striving for national championships honours; commencing on Wednesday, 11 March through to finals day on Saturday, 14 March. The Elite Eight Series, which was first played in 2011 and is now in its fourth instalment, will feature the best-of-the-best Men’s and Women’s players in Australia.   Each year Touch Football Australia raises the bar with the professionalism of this tournament and this year will be no exception. Our younger Scorpion players will be itching to get onto the playing field after many of them experienced great disappointment with the wash-out of the NSWTA Junior State Cup only a few weeks ago.  Scorpions will have representation across a massive 11 divisions and are the reigning Golden Boot champions for the past three years.

Starting with the Men’s Elite 8 division, Coach Dave Nolan is back to the Scorpions family after a tenure with the NSW Rebels.  Dave is an astute coach of the game and alongside him will be Jason Martin – both fresh from their successful Youth Trans-Tasman campaign.  The NSW Scorpions Men’s team have a wealth of talent and also some of the biggest names in the game including Daniel Barton, Sam Brisby, Simon Lang & Jonathan Palau.  Whilst this division is obviously extremely strong an appearance in the final series is a realistic chance with Sam Brisby one of the top few players on the planet at present.  It’s extremely refreshing to see how level headed a player like Brisby has remained with all the success and headlines he achieves – a great example to younger players coming through the ranks.

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The NSW Scorpions Women’s Elite 8 created history last year by going through the tournament undefeated and taking out the title in dramatic fashion. In what was described as the best game of the tournament the NSW Scorpions ended NSW Mets domination in the Women’s division by claiming their first Elite Eight title in a thriller.  As is now edged in Scorpions history a touchdown to Yasmin Meakes with 15 seconds left on the clock gave the Scorpions a thrilling 7-6 victory.  The team this year has another extremely strong playing roster with an abundance of World Cup representatives. Elesha Dougal retains the Captaincy after doing a stellar job last year with Barry Gibson & Anthony Dudeck once again at the helm. Look for a big tournament from Laura Peattie – fresh on the back of a dominant Youth Trans-Tasman performance, with sister Sarah Peattie also ready to impress.  Amongst the quiet achievers will be Hannah Dyball and Tayla Duguid who have both trained extremely impressively.  Last but not least is the one and only Kylie Hilder who brings with her an amazing competitive and infectious winning spirit.

Moving onto the Men’s T-League and Scott Collins gets his opportunity as Head Coach with the able support of Ian Kalms.  Once again this is a very young side with a number of players to watch including Liam Simbolon & Adam Haskins.  Scorpions Women’s T-League have performed extremely strongly since the introduction of this division a few years ago. With experienced coaches Jamie Clifford & Keith Smith in charge another strong performance deep into the tournament looks likely.  Jye Malcolm’s Mixed Opens team have a number of big name players including Josh Gillard who is an obvious Elite 8 talent. The team also have a good mix of youth and enthusiasm that are sure to impress in this division.   The Men’s 30’s are back after a disappointing 2014 campaign.  With Coach Terry Cooper once again in charge the team will be looking to a number of their Australian World Cup representatives to get them back to their glory days.  Watch for big tournaments from Adam Fahim, Drew Davies and the ever reliable Shane “Bubba” Warman.

Looking at the Men’s 40’s team you could be mistaken for thinking this was the NSW or Australian team – with a total of 8 players set to represent the Aussies in the World Cup later this year.  The team are the reigning champions and will no doubt be looking forward to meeting old rivals the South Queensland Sharks yet again.   The Men’s 45’s are looking to continue their unbeaten title run.  Led by the ever-green David Cheung & Tim Kitchingham they would have to be one of the shortest priced favourites in any division at the tournament.   Steve Huckle has been working overtime to get the Men’s 50’s to Coffs with a challenging preparation. However the team have the one and only Cliff Lyons as their trump card and therefore anything is possible.  The Women’s 40’s are looking to go one better than last year when they made it to the Final only to be defeated by the Hornets.  Michelle Griffiths, Vicki Humpherson & Michelle Smidt are the players expected to shine.   The Senior Mixed team are back yet again and have strengthened since last year.  In a classic 3-on-3 drop-off the team went down to the Sharks in last year’s Final.  This year once again Craig Beacoft will be leading the way with new additions Brad Mitchell, Shannon Warren and Sarah Nash all expected to have influential tournaments.  Coach Nhut “The Postman” Trinh will be looking to deliver success.

So that’s the preview of the upcoming 2015 NTL, make sure you follow Scorps Facebook, Instagram & Twitter for the latest news from the tournament.  Good luck to all teams, play hard and Go Scorps!

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Scorpions 10/12’s Merit Training

Many thanks to all the players and parents who attended our second annual 10/12’s Merit Training Session.  The talented players that took part from all the Scorpions affiliates is mind-blowing – the future looks extremely positive!  Many thanks to Interno for supporting the day with some of their fantastic waterbottles.  Our 2015 Boys & Girls 10’s & 12’s Merit teams are below.

Boy’s 10’s: Beau Morrison (Renegades), Ben Noble (Ryde Eastwood), Dylan Brettle (Hills), Gabe Stuart (Renegades), Hamish Douglas (Renegades), Jack O’Connor (Hornsby), Jai Kendal (Hills), Jayden Jenkins (Hills 2), Joey Walsh (Manly), Josh Curl (Hills), Kennan Lawandos (Ryde Eastwood), Jackson Landsdown (Hills 2), Liam Bissett (Parramatta), Luke Maroun (Parramatta), Max Marsters (Manly), Nicholas McMahon (Hornsby), Oscar Gray (Parramatta), Patrick Young (Ryde Eastwood), Tylan Black Berryman (Manly).

Girls 10’s: Amber Jurotte (Hornsby), Anaia Cruickshank (Renegades), Chelsea Smyth (Renegades), Giselle Kusto (Ryde Eastwood), Hannah Dale (Parramatta), Hayley Hopper (Ryde Eastwood), Laila Dimech (Parramatta), Mackenzie Davis (Hills), Marissa Stubbs (Renegades), Mia McGregor (Hornsby), Milla Elaro (Parramatta), Mischa Morrell (Manly), Olivia Inkster (Manly), Piper Simons (Manly), Raph Perigo (Hills), Sienna Wheelhouse (Ryde Eastwood), Tara Roberts (Hornsby), Taylor Gates (Hills), Claudia Bowen (Norths), Sienna Kafer (Norths), Chloe McDonell (Norths).

Boy’s 12’s: Bailey Swain (Manly 2), Brody Howard (Ryde Eastwood), Cameron Hall (Hornsby), Daniel Denison (Hills 2), Daniel O’Donnell (Manly), Ethan Sanders (Hills), Jayden Ambichi (Parramatta), Joseph Nohra (Ryde Eastwood), Josh Ruxton (Hills 2), Lochoneus Paki (Manly), Malakai Halo (Manly 2), Malakai Latitevu (Ryde Eastwood), Matt Curl (Hills), Michael Geddes (Parramatta), Oskar Warner (Renegades), Riley Canning (Hills), Riley Mayo (Renegades), Ryan Brophy (Hornsby), Teddy Wilson (Manly), Tobey Lewis (Parramatta), Tom Morrison (Renegades), Zac Davidson (Hornsby), Jack Bowen (Norths), Ben Kafer (Norths), Charlie Marwedel (Norths).

Girls 12’s: Addison Cordery (Parramatta), Brearna Nathan (Manly), Georgia Hekeik (Parramatta), Grace Carpenter (Manly), Hannah Longton (Hills), Holly McNamara (Hills), Holy Raaff (Renegades), Imogen Sayer (Manly 2), Karly O’Neill (Ryde Eastwood), Lala Duff (Manly), Lauren Geddes (Hornsby), Layla Ritchie (Renegades), Loren Gorman (Hornsby), Mackenzie Williams (Hornsby), Matilda Donkin (Parramatta), Phoebe Hunt (Hills), Portia Amy-Wilson (Ryde Eastwood), Summer Syron (Manly 2), Zoe Chaney (Ryde Eastwood), Zoey Miller (Renegades), Madeleine McDonell (Norths), Jessica MacLennan-Pike (Norths), Sasha Oaten (Norths).

Scorpions 2015 Junior Regional Squads

Congratulations to the following players named in our 2015 Sydney Scorpions 14/16/18’s NSWTA Junior Regional Championship squads.  Players were selected from the Junior State Cup which took place over the weekend at Port Macquarie.  We apologise in advance if there are any spelling errors with names, to have them corrected please get in contact.  Additionally we apologise as some affiliates did not provide the requested team registrations sheets so we could only identify and name player via their shirt number.  As per Sydney Scorpions policy section 4.9, “In regards to the Sydney Scorpions squads selected from the NSWTA Junior State Cup to complete at the NSWTA Junior Regionals (Girls & Boys 14/16/18 divisions), all players that were in previous years final team (excluding shadows) will be automatically included in the next year’s squad. For example, if a player made the 14 Girls team in 2014 and she is eligible for the 14 Girls again, she will automatically be included in the 14 Girls squad in 2015. However if she is now eligible for 16 Girls then she is not an automatic selection in the 16 Girls squad”Continue Reading

Scorpions 2015 NTL Teams

Sydney Scorpions are pleased to announce their teams that will compete at the 2015 National Touch League & Elite 8 tournaments.

Men’s Elite 8:  Alex Nicholls, Cain Rangi, Ciaran Toner, Daniel Barton, Derek Duff, Ed Burrell, Harry Berryman, Jackson Mills, Jonathan Palau, Jordan Sarmento, Jordon Horo, Kai Simbolon, Mark Roberts, Quinn Witaker, Sam Brisby Simon Lang
Women’s Elite 8:  Danielle Davis, Elesha Dougal, Hannah Dyball, Laura Peattie, Sarah Peattie, Yasmin Meakes, Kylie Hilder, Jenna Hitch, Jess Fowler, Josie Ruawai, Nicky Albery, Tayla Duguid, Zara Nicholas, Steph Maiolo, Tegan Chandler, Haley Crawford

Elite8 & NTL Logo

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Scorpions 2015 Coaching Appointments

Sydney Scorpions are pleased to announce their coaching positions for the 2015 representative season.

14 Girls: Head Coach – Gavin Bruce  Assistant Coach – Keith Smith
14 Boys: Head Coach – Robert Barakat  Assistant Coaches – Matt Scranage & Matt Lawson
16 Girls: Head Coach – Jye Malcolm  Assistant Coaches – Carol Jones & Roha Paki
16 Boys: Head Coach – Brandon McDonald  Assistant Coaches – Edward Johnston & Brad Curl
18 Girls: Head Coach – Melissa Mitchell  Assistant Coaches – Craig Beacroft & Nhut Trinh
18 Boys: Head Coach – Jason Martin  Assistant Coach – Jim Randall

Women’s T-League: Head Coach – Jamie Clifford Assistant Coach – Keith Smith
Men’s T-League: Head Coach  – Scott Collins Assistant Coach – Ian Kalms
Mixed Opens: Head Coach – Jye Malcolm  AC  – Andrew Windsor  Manager  – Indi Angel-Auld
Men’s 30’s: Head Coach – Terry Cooper
Men’s 40’s: Head Coach – Ian Kalms
Men’s 45’s: Head Coach – Brett Gillard
Men’s 50’s: Head Coach  – Steve Huckle
Senior Mixed: Head Coach – Nhut Trinh Assistant Coaches  – Craig Beacroft & Dave Roberts
Women’s 40’s: Head Coach – Paul Robinson  Manager  – Monique Licardy

Scorpions Tim Kitchingham Awarded Rod Wise Medal

The Sydney Scorpions Tim Kitchingham was recognised for his contribution to the sport of Touch Football at Saturday night’s NSWTA Blues Awards Dinner, being named the Rod Wise Medal winner for Volunteer of the Year. Involved across many levels of the sport, from affiliate through to Australian representation, Kitchingham is a very deserving Rod Wise Medal recipient. Kitchingham is the Sydney Scorpions assistant regional director as well as technical director off the field, while on the field he has 76 caps for Australia, making him the fifth most capped Australian representative of all time. He is also a Touch Football Australia and New South Wales Touch Association Hall of Fame member. Kitchingham told the audience at the Blues Awards Dinner that volunteers like him do it because of their love for the sport. “It backs up all the work you do and it’s not just about me, it’s about all the people who were up here earlier as well, we do it for the sport,” Kitchingham said. Kitchingham thanked his wife, Tracey for her support, as well the Scorpions. “I’d like to thank my wife for what she puts up with, she probably enjoys me being out of the house, which is a good thing for her, she gets to watch all her taped TV shows,” he joked. “She knows the highs I get from this game, whether it be playing or seeing the kids come through from a junior level to a senior level, like (2013/14 Junior Players of the Year) Matt Wilson and Hannah Dyball. “The people at Scorpions are just fantastic, players, parents, the people involved – Brett Gillard, Anthony Dudeck, I couldn’t do it without them. To Gary and Mel Croft, thank you for the trust you put in the new committee that came in a number of years ago, we hope we’ve done you proud”.

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Women’s NSW Scorpions Take Out Elite 8 Title

By Ben Harris – TFA website.   It has been described as the best game of the 2014 X-Blades National Touch League. NSW Scorpions ended NSW Mets domination in the Women’s division by claiming the Elite Eight title in a thriller.  A touchdown to Yasmin Meakes with 15 seconds left on the clock gave the Scorpions a 7-6 victory.  Three touchdowns were scored in the final minute as the two combatants threw everything but the kitchen sink at each other.  The win maintained the Scorpions’ perfect record at the 2014 tournament.  It also gave them their first NTL Women’s Open title.  Scorpions Captain Elesha Dougal said it was an incredible achievement for her team.  “People said at the start [of the tournament], ‘errr, I don’t know how they will go’ but we have just proved them all wrong,” Dougal said.  “I am so proud of the girls. It was the hardest game we’ve played in and I knew it would be; so credit to our team and credit to Mets. They pushed us.  “We believed in ourselves so a full credit to the girls and the coaching staff.”  In a match that was tit-for-tat until the final whistle, the Mets opened the scoring first through Botille Veitte-Walsh.  Both teams attacked each other’s scoreline but could not get the touchdown.  A bit of Teagan Chandler magic put Laura Peattie over for a touchdown to level the scores.  The Scorpions hit the lead through Yasmin Meakes but it was cancelled out by Claire Moran’s touchdown in the corner. In the final two minutes, Mets scored twice and Scorpions once, which made the score 4-3 in favour of the two-time champions.

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Shortly after the break a Hilder pass put Sarah Peattie over the line and levelled the scores again. Scorpions hit the lead when Lizzy Hewitt found the scoreline and immediately after, Mets were disallowed a touchdown due to a forward pass. But it soon did not matter as Kristin Boss scored to level the scores.  The final minute had the crowd on the edge of their seats.  Scorpions thought they had won it when Shellie Davis buried her way over the line to score.  But Mets’ captain Claire Tandek scored immediately and a drop-off was highly likely.  The Scorpions had one last shot and they made it count when Meakes scored the decisive touchdown in the corner with 15 seconds to go.  The referees conferred on the field and they were happy for the touchdown to count.

NSW Scorpions 7 defeated NSW Mets 6
Touchdowns: Scorpions 7 (Yasmin Meakes 3, Sarah Peattie, Laura Peattie, Lizzy Hewitt, Shellie Davis) defeated Mets 6 (Botille Veitte-Walsh 2, Claire Moran, Kirstie Jenkins, Kristin Boss, Claire Tandek)
Player of the Final:  Danielle Davis
TFA YouTube:  Full video footage of the game can be found here.  Highlights of the game can be found here.

Women’s Open Final timeline:  3 minute Mets 1-0 Scorpions – Botille Veitte-Walsh touchdown.   9 minute 1-all – Laura Peattie touchdown.  13 minute Scorpions 2-1 – Yasmin Meakes touchdown.  14 minute 2-all – Claire Moran touchdown.  18 minute Mets 3-2 – Botille Veitte-Walsh touchdown.  19 minute 3-all – Yasmin Meakes touchdown.   19 minute Mets 4-3 – Kirstie Jenkins touchdown.   Half-time – Mets 4-3.  23 minute 4-all – Sarah Peattie touchdown.  32 minute Scorpions 5-4 – Lizzy Hewitt touchdown.  36 minute 5-all – Kristin Boss touchdown.  39 minute Scorpions 6-5 – Shellie Davis touchdown.    40 minute 6-all – Claire Tandek touchdown.  40 minute Scorpions 7-6 – Yasmin Meakes touchdown.

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