Benalla Hockey Club Presentation Night

By Benalla Ensign

The Benalla Hockey Club celebrated a successful 2019 season at its Presentation Night on Saturday, held at Ella Goose.

A culmination of a fantastic year of hockey, with the Men’s team being runners-up to the GVHA B Men’s Premiership, and more than 25 children involved in Hook In2 Hockey.

U10 and U12 juniors Lily, Charlie, Jacinta, Maddie, Zac, Hadassah, Amber, Zander, Xavier, Noah, Angus, Bella, Olly, Jai and Jack. Absent: Bella, Ben, Seth, Warick.

This year's highlights included fielding two junior teams for the first time in decades, including seven players in their first year of hockey. 

The Under-10s finished top of the ladder, being undefeated in the first 10 rounds. The Under-12s also had a stellar year, with great teamwork in their half-field competition.

Benalla juniors also played in composite teams, including Strikers, the Under-14 premiers, and SYC Under-14 and Under-16 teams.

Men’s award recipients Evan Dowe, Thomas Hill, Charlie Grimwade and Alan Sutherland.

President Latham Carroll thanked the Club’s volunteer committee, coaches and managers, and all the parents, helpers and sponsors.

Stick 2 Hockey awards were presented to Hadassah Adams and Emily Milner by coach Lee Manning.

Senior Clubperson Lee Manning and Junior Clubperson Charlie Grimwade.

Senior awards were presented by manager Mel Gillies and coach Marty Gillies:

Best and Fairest - Prue White and Evan Dowe

Most Improved Player -  Robyn Farley and Thomas Hill

Encouragement Award - Sarah Farley andSean Trevaskis

Robyn Birch Coach’s Award - Lee Manning

Rupe Cheetham Coach’s Award - Alan Sutherland

Under 10 juniors Noah, Olly, Xavier, Angus, Bella, Zander, Jack, Jai and Lily with awards sponsor Tim from McDonalds and coach Marty.

The Ken Dahlenberg Best First Year Player was awarded to Gaye Watson, who was a huge asset in defence in her first year playing.

The John Nicholls Memorial Family Award went to the Gillies family, who are dedicated to providing kids with the opportunity to play hockey.

Under 12 juniors Amber, Maddie, Xavier, Jacinta, Zac, Angus, Olly, Noah, Seth with coach Marty and awards sponsor Tim from McDonalds.

Three perpetual awards were voted for by players, and presented by life members Don Berry and Mark Welsh:

Annie Fraser Best Sportswoman went to Willow Plex for her great teamwork, encouragement and work on the committee.

Echuca ends Benalla's hopes

Don Berry Best Sportsman went to Charlie Grimwade for his encouragement and assistance on and off the field.

David Berry Memorial Best Club-person went to Lee Manning for her work coaching juniors, publicity, grants, the “New synthetic field for Benalla” project, and playing.

Women’s award recipients Prue White, Lee Manning, Sarah and Robyn Farley.

Junior awards were announced by team manager Mel Gillies, and presented by coach Marty Gillies and Tim from trophy sponsor McDonalds Benalla:

Under 10’s

Most Valuable Player - Zander Gillies

Best Team Player - Oliver Gillies

Most Improved - Jai Nolen

Coaches Award - Jack Chittick

Rock Solid Defense - Noah Gillies

Most Consistent - Angus Woodward

Most Determined - Xavier Watson

Encouragement Award - Bella Hately

Confidence Award - Lily Stewart

Grand Final Preview

Under 12’s

Best and Fairest - Olly Gillies

Diane Martell Coach’s Award - Seth Hately

Most Improved Player - Xavier Watson

Most Consistent - Amber Armstrong

Encouragement Award - Madeline Watson

Certificate - Ben and Zac Fennell, Noah Gillies, Warick Jury, Angus and Jacinta Woodward.

Junior perpetual trophies were presented by the 2018 recipients Olly Gillies, Willow Plex and Thomas Hill:

Junior First Year Player - Zander Gillies                    

Junior Club Person Award - Charlie Grimwade                  

Bernice O’Brien U18 Player of the Year - Evan Dowe

Benalla students competed in Hockey Victoria’s Junior State Championships                    

The Junior Club-person was awarded to Charlie Grimwade, for assisting with coaching and mentoring all the juniors, playing in junior and senior sides and for always helping out.

Latham Carroll thanked Benalla Hockey Club’s sponsors Ultimate Refrigeration and Air Conditioning, Cellarbrations, Delatite Steel, the Royal Hotel, Landmark, Bridgestone Benalla, McDonalds Benalla, Hollywood Café, Burke Signs, Linqage International consultants and also the Benalla Ensign for their great coverage of hockey this year.

Club members and families enjoyed a great night of celebrations, and are looking forward to a fun summer hockey competition and the Benalla Festival Parade in Term 4.

* All photos by Lee Manning