For the first time in five years, Quirindi High School have won the Beau Valley Shield, beating Bellingen High School.
QHS teacher Liz Saunders – who has been part of the Beau Valley Shield for 28 years, including 25 years involvement in organising the event – said she was impressed with the large number of participants this year.
“Over 90 students from Bellingen participated in this year’s [QHS-hosted] event,” she said. “It was noticeable that the number of junior students participating was large and the level of the skill was great.
“Our future QHS combined high school teams are looking really healthy with the talent coming thorough.”
The event was in its 44th year. “Teachers, students, community volunteers and ex-students all united to referee, coach, umpire and assist,” Saunders said.
“The QHS hospitality staff and students were amazing, and we all joined together in the spirit of sportsmanship and friendship.”
QHS said that while every student and team did the school proud, the Year 7/8 girls hockey team won for the first time in a very long time.
The school’s senior boys soccer team had a draw, which QHS have never done before against the traditionally strong Bellingen outfits.
The senior boys rugby side was a standout for sportsmanship, with them donning Bellingen jerseys as there was only one Bellingen player, who joined the QHS side.
“It was great to see the QHS students get in and support Bellingen to make up a team so Sam from Bellingen could play the sport of his choice,” Saunders said. “We ended up with Year 11 QHS boys playing Year 12 QHS boys and it was a tough game.”
QHS were dominant in basketball and touch football. Computer games were staged for the first time in the event’s history. It attracted 40 participants.
“We had some sports that are not played at any school, including theatre sports, computer games, badminton and squash, so it really meant some students stepped out of their comfort zone to participate,” Saunders said.
QHS thanked Bellingen High School for making the journey over and for being so “generous in spirit”. It was another “wonderful cultural and sporting exchange”, the school added.
“Thank you also to all the parents and carers who hosted billets, arrange their transport and meals. Here’s to the creation of new friendships and the strengthening of old ones,” Saunders said.