U14 Tamworth girls step up a level with ease

TAMWORTH Thunderbolt Under 14 girls’  basketball side is blazing an impressive new sporting trail that could be heading towards a fairy- tale ending.

The  Greg O’Toole-coached side is preparing to play the final round of the Country Premier League (CPL).

So far the side has exceeded all expectations by winning seven games and losing four.

“They have performed very well,” O’Toole said.

“They elected to take the step up to CPL after winning the Northern Junior League (NJL) last year. 

“The NJL would not have provided a challenge for them. They would not have improved individually or as a team.

“So we stuck them in the CPL. That has the seven top teams in country NSW as well as Canberra.

“To have won seven has exceeded all expectations. 

“It’s been a bit of surprise for a few people.

“But it’s been the way the girls have taken up the challenge that has impressed me.

“Tamworth can be proud of what they’ve done so far.

“If they can make the finals (top four), it would be absolutely outstanding.”

Tamworth Under 14 Country Premier League hopefuls (front from left) Brianna Zwolsman, Josie Chick,  Jessica Watt, Krystal Booby, Miah O’Sullivan (Back from left) Naomi Monckton, Grace Salter, Ruby Murphy, Sienna Kennedy. Photo: Geoff O’Neill 160514GOF01

Tamworth Under 14 Country Premier League hopefuls (front from left) Brianna Zwolsman, Josie Chick, Jessica Watt, Krystal Booby, Miah O’Sullivan (Back from left) Naomi Monckton, Grace Salter, Ruby Murphy, Sienna Kennedy. Photo: Geoff O’Neill 160514GOF01

To do that, the Tamworth Thunderbolt side must win its remaining three games in the final round at Gosford on June 14/15 against Maitland, Western Reds and Illawarra.

They have played the three teams once, beating Illawarra by one point, Maitland by five and Western Reds (combined Dubbo-Orange-Bathurst) by nine.

“If they can beat them again they will qualify for the top four,” O’Toole said. “That’s our goal.”

O’Toole would be ecstatic if the side could do that in its  first year of CPL.

He also thanks Thunderbolt State League coach John Ireland for his help and input with the side.

“John’s had good input. It’s great when the State League coach shows an interest.”

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