School sports: Theresians retain national B Division hockey title, beating St Nicholas

CHIJ St Theresa's Convent B Division girls posing with their medals and trophies after winning the Schools National B Division girls' hockey championship.
CHIJ St Theresa's Convent B Division girls posing with their medals and trophies after winning the Schools National B Division girls' hockey championship.ST PHOTO: AZMI ATHNI

Last year, when CHIJ St Theresa's Convent (STC) won the Schools National B Division girls' hockey championship, it was after more than a decade.

This time however, their wait was much shorter, as they beat CHIJ St Nicholas Girls' School 2-0 in the final on Thursday at the Sengkang Hockey Stadium.

After a tumultuous affair in the first half, when STC had the upper hand, both teams went into the break goal-less. However in the second half, STC raised their tempo and movement - leading them to fire in two goals within the first 10 minutes of the restart.

The first goal, tapped in by vice-captain Dhaaneya Ramasamy, was the result of a goal-mouth scramble after a layoff into the area by team-mate Alicia Neo. Just minutes later, the latter made a blistering run down the wing to slot in STC's second.

"Honestly, it felt really amazing to score the first goal. St Nicks were giving us a hard fight and to put in that one goal was a difficult thing," Dhaaneya said.

"Right before I got the ball and scored, I kept telling myself to put the ball in - no matter how hard it gets so that I can help the team win the championship."

Team captain Jolene Ng was happy and proud of the girls for managing to retain their title. The 15-year-old said: "Our team worked hard and fought hard in the game. I encouraged them to keep pushing on, and not to give up."

This marks Ng's fourth national title in a row, having won the C Division hockey championships in 2013 and 2014 while also being in last year's B Division-winning team. Besides that, she also bagged an individual award for best sportsmanship.

Seeing his school win the title for the second year running was a super feeling for STC's hockey teacher-in-charge Leslie Francis. He said: "It took us a long time to become champions last year. To get there was hard but now to maintain it was harder. It was a long journey this year, so we are very happy."

In the boys' final, St Andrew's Secondary School came out 2-0 victors in their tie against Seng Kang Secondary School to claim their first national title in eight years.