SMART PLAY: Defender Kelly McNamara moves the ball away from Ipswich’s danger zone during yesterday’s win at Raceview.
SMART PLAY: Defender Kelly McNamara moves the ball away from Ipswich’s danger zone during yesterday’s win at Raceview.

Ipswich hockey teams forging ahead

SKILFUL DUEL: Ipswich under-15 goal scorer Layla Eleison angles her stick to stop a diving Gold Coast opponent during yesterday’s 3-2 win at the Ipswich Hockey Centre.
SKILFUL DUEL: Ipswich under-15 goal scorer Layla Eleison angles her stick to stop a diving Gold Coast opponent during yesterday’s 3-2 win at the Ipswich Hockey Centre. David Nielsen

THE next generation of Ipswich achievers can step up to the mark at state championships in two cities today.

Ipswich's skilful under-15 boys hockey team play arch rivals Brisbane in their Queensland final at 1pm in Murwillumbah today.

That follows yesterday's powerhouse 6-1 victory over Cairns in the semi-final.

The unbeaten Ipswich boys team features a number of players who shared in an under-13 state title success two years ago.

On form this week, they can add more state glory to Ipswich's trophy cupboard this afternoon.

"Everyone did their job in terms of the work rate,'' manager Bruce Robertson said.

"They ran all over them. It could have been more than 10.''

Yesterday's goal-scorers for Ipswich were Caleb McCoombes (three), Ryan Smith (two) and Thomas Picton.

Meanwhile, the Ipswich under-15 girls survived a nerve-racking penalty corner after the siren to advance to today's playoff for fifth.

Ipswich (1) beat Gold Coast (1) 3-2 in a thriller at the Ipswich Hockey Complex yesterday.

After being deadlocked 1-1 at halftime, Ipswich set up victory with second-half goals to Brooke Pavitt and a second from Layla Eleison.

However, Gold Coast replied instantly to set up a tense final 11 minutes.

Ipswich plays Townsville in today's playoff at 11.45am.

Townsville beat Brisbane (2) 4-1 in their crossover clash yesterday.

"That's what they deserve,'' coach Brendan Eleison said of his team after watching the final penalty corner spray wide.

"It was a really good effort. They really grounded it out today.

"We know that we are a quality side.

"We just had some real odd results.

"They played good hockey today.

"I'm really proud of them.''

Eleison's daughter Layla converted a first-half penalty corner before a fine field goal with 12 minutes left.

Brooke also scored a penalty goal to put Ipswich 2-1 up.

Among Ipswich's best were goalkeeper Emily Witheyman- Crump and defender Kelly McNamara.

"Emily was exceptional, all were crucial saves as they (Gold Coast) have got some pretty good strikers,'' Eleison said.

"Kelly is only tiny, but she's got a big motor. She's a really intelligent hockey player, her anticipation and reading the game.''

Ipswich's number two side lost 1-0 to Gold Coast (2) yesterday.

Ipswich (2) plays off for seventh and eighth in Division 2 against Mackay (2) at 10.30am today.



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