Ipswich-based players gain higher recognition
HAVING a team like Easts back in the 2017 Ipswich A-Grade men's competition would provide a post-Christmas present for passionate officials like Margret Mantell.
Restoring the competition at senior level would build on some of the great development work achieved this year at Ipswich Hockey.
While proud of Ipswich's Hookin2Hockey junior program, Mantell also was happy about the growth of the indoor game at Redbank and the rise of Ipswich- based players like Layla Eleison, Cade Banditt, Eden Jackat and Gabby Nicholls.
"Our development programs are working, both indoor and outdoor,'' she said. "Rep players are now being recognised and they are Ipswich based.''
Mantell said while Brisbane offered a better level of competition, Ipswich's best players could still advance their careers while playing regularly in the Ipswich competition.
"The ability is still there to make it (into higher level teams),'' she said. "And that's what we need to keep our competition strong.
"We need those players to stay and play in Ipswich to provide that role model for the younger ones coming through.''
Ipswich Hockey's president praised the spirit in which teams played this season, especially during the competitive finals.
Mantell is also pleased to see the work of Ipswich volunteers recognised.
Twenty year contributor Heather Scott was the latest person recognised in the City of Ipswich Sports Awards.
Other dedicated hockey volunteers like Denis Tierney, Karen Dolan, Jan Walker, Lesley McLeod and Tracy Doyle have been honoured at Ipswich and state level in recent years.