v Westlake Girls Second XI
1 August, 2017, at North Harbour Hockey

MAGS wins 3-2

Goal scorers: Maisy Simpson 1, Lulu Grimes 2

Wow what a game. This one was a cliffhanger, and one of those games that saw MAGS dominate with possession, but just not put the passes together.

The game began with the MAGS girls quickly on attack and gaining a penalty corner.  A well executed straight shot into bottom left corner of the net by Maisy Simpson say MAGS take an early goal.

The half progressed and again MAGS were on attack and had another chance at a goal with a second penalty corner.  Again the MAGS corner saw success with a left lay off back to Lulu Grimes who slotted it home.

Unfortunately, the MAGS defence were found lacking and the Westlake girls pounced and put the ball past our keeper.  Half time score was 2-1 up.

The second half saw MAGS continue to be a bit panicky, and neglect the principle to remain calm, collected, and make the ball do the work.  Play went end to end.  With MAGS doing the attacking, the Westlake keeper was a solid barrier for her team, and the MAGS girls were unable to open the scoring floodgates.

The Westlake attack really pounced on MAGS’ mistakes, which saw them score a second goal. The pressure was on.  Finally, within the last 5 minutes, another penalty corner was gained, and was again finished off well by Lulu Grimes.

A tough match that proved the girls they can win scrappy games.  Babe Ruth  said “It’s hard to be a person who never gives up,” and this is true of the 2017 MAGS girls, who continue to play right to the final whistle.

v Baradene
27 July, at Mount Roskill turf

MAGS loses 0-4

John Wooden, a well-established coach said, “Losing is only temporary and not all encompassing. You must simply study it, learn from it, and try hard not to lose the same way again. Then you must have the self-control to forget about it.”

The first week back saw us play Baradene, which has always been a solid opponent.  The game started with MAGS in possession and playing a strong passing game.  When the ball was let go, the MAGS girls looked a very good team.  They definitely had the upper hand.  But a solid game from the Baradene goalie saw the MAGS girls struggle get the past her.  The game was halted due to lights not being turned on, and the girls regrouped.  The rest of the first half saw end to end play, and the Baradene girls worked their way around our keeper. MAGS went into halftime 0-1 down.

The second half again saw MAGS with possession and territory but unable to convert the chances we had.  Again, the girls never gave up, and continued to run their lines, put pressure on the Baradene defence, but we just could not put goals away.  Even with ugly tackling by Baradene which saw cards given, and unable to convert numerous penalty corners, it was a tough ask.  MAGS had their opportunity, but Baradene ended up pouncing on loose ball, and put two quick goals away, again working around the keeper.

This game once again saw young players continue to thrive in new positions, and each game is building toward our tournament.  While we ended up losing 0-4, it was a tough battle, and unfortunately, we could not get the ball past the Baradene keeper.  I am still proud of the efforts that each and every player keeps giving me each week.

v Rangitoto College
4 July, 2017, at Rangitoto

MAGS loses 1-4

Bobby Jones, an American golfer who revolutionised the game, said “Golf is a game that is played on a five-inch course – the distance between your ears.

This quote represents any sport that is played.  The only difference in this match between MAGS and Rangitoto was belief.

The MAGS girls started lackadaisical, allowing the Rangi girls to score off a corner with the opening two minutes.  This rallied MAGS, and with the knowledge that tonight was the last game for Year 13 Head Girl Jaimee McLaughlin, the MAGS girls started protecting the ball.  The first half became a battle of wits and skill.  The MAGS girls were showing ascendancy and the passing game was solid.  MAGS had more possession of the first half, and a nice passing movement between Ciana Campi and Lulu Grimes down the left saw Lulu slot the ball past the goalie to equal the score.  This gave the girls a bounce in their step and the belief this top of the table clash could go either way.  A bit of luck right on the stroke of half time saw Rangitoto score a high goal to leave the score at 1-2.

The second half went much the way of the first.  Passing by both sides was crisp, and it often involved end to end play.  However, Rangi started to get the upper hand, and the MAGS girls got spread.  As the half progressed, two more goals were put past our keeper.

As a coach, I am once again proud of the game played by the MAGS girls.  Even though little mistakes crept into our game, we played well, never gave up and fought right to the end.  Defence, you continue to surprise me on the strength you show and pressure you absorb.  Midfield, you keep running and surprising me with the strength and versatility you show.  Attack, you keep running, running and running – one day we will get on the end of the pass to put the ball away.  Final score was 1-4, which is the closest game Rangi has played within this competition.

v Epsom Girls Grammar
29 June, 2017, at Diocesan Turf

MAGS wins 4-2

Goal scorers: Ciana Campi x 2, Maisy Simpson, Lulu Grimes

Buddha said “It is better to conquer yourself than to win a thousand battles. Then the victory is yours….” This quote very much applies to the game that unfolded against EGGS.

With illness, injury, and the Tough Guy Tough Gal challenge today, the MAGS girls dug deep.  For a third time this season we played EGGS, who again showed their strength at the back. Alisha Keshaw stepped up and played goalie this week, when she normally plays fullback.  A huge thank you to Alisha for stepping into a role that is immensely important.

The MAGS girls started outstandingly. Within the first minute MAGS had scored a corner, and while it broke down, a great ball across the circle by Leanne Burton saw Ciana Campi pounce and put the ball into the back of the net.  With excitement running through the girls, a momentary lapse of concentration, saw EGGS score a well worked team goal. From then on the first half was then a battle of wits and skill, played between 25 and 25.  The first half ended 1-1.

The second half started much the same as the first.  Each team tried to out pass the other, but the MAGS girls applied pressure.  This led to a turnover and we pounced – Lulu Grimes took a shot at goal and a scramble attack saw Ciana Campi put away her second point.

MAGS was on fire and we scored another two goals within five minutes.  The third goal came from a great intercept by Shivani Unka who passed to Jaimee McLaughlin who did a great little drop off to Maisy Simpson to send it into the back of the goal.  The fourth goal saw Ciana Campi pass off to Lulu Grimes to take a straight shot at goal, which flew past the keeper.

The EGGS girls did not lie down though, and came back with their own goal.  The game then progressed the same as before with each team keeping hold of the ball.  I was very proud of the girls to defeat an opposition going to tournament ranked higher than us.

v St Mary’s College
15 June, 2017, at Diocesan Turf

MAGS loses 0-3

“No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man.” This was the theme of the week for the school, and it applies very much to sport.  No team ever plays the same game as the week before.  Coaches can ask you to play the same, but you know that circumstances have changed and it just does not happen.

Understanding that St Mary’s is a tough opposition, and with many players from both teams knowing each other, this match was more a psychological battle than a tactical one.  The MAGS girls were excited about the game, but with illness marring the team, we knew it would be a struggle.  This proved correct when St Mary’s worked around our goalie to put away the first goal within the first 5 minutes of the game.

This seemed to spark the MAGS girls, and for the next 20 minutes there was a fierce battle with the game being played between the 25m marks.  MAGS was showing strength and dominance, and many times the ball went past the post, but we couldn’t quite score.  With the half winding down, St Mary’s put in another well worked move around the goalie saw them take a 2-0 lead into half time.

The second half again saw MAGS with possession and territory but unable to convert the chances we had.  The girls never at any stage gave up, and they continued to run their lines and put pressure on the St Mary’s defence, but we just could not put goals away.  Unfortunately, we ended up conceding a third goal – a deflected shot up into top right hand corner.

Bill Brady said “Ambition is the path to success. Persistence is the vehicle you arrive in” – that’s hockey.  This game saw young players continue to thrive in new positions, and each game is building to our tournament, where our persistence will hopefully lead to success.

v Mahurangi College
June 15, at Harbour Hockey

MAGS wins 3-1

Goals by Ciana Campi, Maisy Simpson, Lulu Grimes

This week saw the start of the Supercity competition. Thus our opposition for MAGS was North Harbour school Mahurangi.  Our team was light on numbers, due to illness and school trips.  However, we welcomed back our goalie, Laura Polo, from injury, who put confidence into a new-look defence.

The first half was a battle of skill, and the MAGS defence absorbed a lot of pressure.  Unfortunately, a nice reverse shot from a Mahurangi attacker went into the far post.  At half time we were 0-1 down.

The second half started with solid passing, and it was noticeable that the MAGS girls started to rise to the occasion.  The forwards were running nice lines, the midfield were looking to combine with the attack, and the defence were strong in their channeling, which lead to the Mahurangi strikers making mistakes.  A well-worked goal started from the back, saw a shot at the net, a rebound to Shivani Unka, who got it past the keeper for Ciana Campi to put away on left post.

The second goal came five minutes later with Maisy Simpson beating two players and a playing lovely flat shot straight past the Mahurangi goalie to take the score to 2-1.

Remembering last year when Mahurangi scored an equaliser in the dying minutes, Mahurangi was on attack with penalty corners, but the MAGS defence held out.  This again allowed the ball to get into the forwards which drew a corner.  The corner was one that was practiced and saw Lulu Grimes put away an easy goal.  Final score 3-1 to a very relieved MAGS team.

v Epsom Girls Grammar School
June 8, at Auckland Grammar turf

MAGS loses 1-2

Each week the MAGS girls show up with the expectation their game will improve and results will go our way.  As a coach, I expect 100% of my players and each week they continue to work hard.  Not once in the past four weeks have the girls given up during the game.  The EGGS game was no different.

The girls were focused in their warm up and basics was what needed to be done well.  The first half was a good battle between the teams, and it was not until the 20th minute that EGGS managed to get the ball past our stand-in keeper from the Second XI.  However, what EGGS could do, MAGS girls responded to and a brilliant ball hit by Maisy Simpson from half way connected with Ciana Campi who had run high into the circle to connect.


The second half began with MAGS once again pressuring EGGS, and we saw wave on wave of attack.  However, it just was not MAGS’ night as the EGGS girls defended well, and MAGS could not connect with some great balls that were put across the circle.  With all the attack MAGS enjoyed, an interesting option choice was had at the back, which saw another great save by our goalie, but the clearance was not the best and was given straight back to an EGGS attacker who had an open shot at goal. Final score 1-2 to EGGS.

While the result did not go our way, I am still proud of the girls and the game we are trying to play when the ball is passed.  This game meant that the MAGS girls finished  8th in Auckland.

v Avondale College
1 June, 2017, at Avondale

MAGS loses 0-1

Wilma Rudolph, a world-record-holding Olympic champion and international sports icon in track and field following her successes in the 1956 and 1960 Olympic Games, said “Winning is great, sure, but if you are really going to do something in life, the secret is learning how to lose. Nobody goes undefeated all the time. If you can pick up after a crushing defeat, and go on to win again, you are going to be a champion someday.”

This is a quote that could be applied to MAGS’ Girls First XI Hockey.  With 13 players and our seniors away with school responsibilities, we took on a formidable foe in Avondale’s First XI.  The first half saw MAGS gain solid possession but the Avondale defence stood strong, and absorbed all the pressure.  MAGS’ attack put ball after ball across the goal, but never quite connected with a MAGS stick to put it in the net.  The Avondale girls were good at break out and put defence into attack.  Their point was a result of their centre half being allowed a crack at the goal.  MAGS went into half time 0-1 down.

The second half was effectively the same as the first.  The MAGS girls attacked and did not quite manage to put the ball past the Avondale keeper.  Maisy Simpson made a fantastic reverse shot that hit the top cross bar, then we hit the post two more times.

While disappointed in the final score of 1-0, MAGS saw new players step up, and Monique Stevens, another U15A member, also played well.

Malcolm X said “There is no better than adversity. Every defeat, every heartbreak, every loss, contains its own seed, its own lesson on how to improve your performance the next time.”

v Diocesan School First XI
15 May, 2017, at Mount Roskill Grammar School turf

Diocesan wins 0-6

Winston Churchill said “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” This quote sums up the game this week.

It was a top of a table clash, but unfortunately the MAGS girls went in on themselves, and allowed the Dio girls to dominate.  Dio put in two quick goals which jolted the MAGS girls into action. Some nice running and passing allowed the game to even out.  However, with a minute to go, Dio put away a corner we thought we had practiced to defend.  The first half finished with us 0-3 down.

In the second half MAGS tried to come out firing, but our basics were lacking, and the Dio girls were everywhere.  Credit to the opposition for continuing to pile on the pressure.  MAGS did not give up, and continued to try and trouble the Dio attack.

This game was a test of the merits of two top teams, and decided final standings in the pool. Hopefully next time MAGS will come out on top.

v Howick College
11 May, at Dio Turf
MAGS wins 3-0

Goal scorer: A hat trick to Jaimee McLaughlin

We were wary of Howick College as they’d had a big loss the week before, so we were prepared for them to start strongly.

The MAGS girls started well, with passing and strength on show.  Space was found on the right by Lulu Grimes who once again shone in the rain.  Players led wide and drew defenders out of place to allow Lulu space to run and then put good balls across to find Jaimee McLaughlin on the post. Jaimee tapped one in for the first goal. Completing a right layoff corner saw a second goal for the MAGS girls disallowed for height.  Entering half time MAGS were 1-0 up.

The second half saw MAGS set up opportunities that weren’t quite sealed on the final pass.  Full credit has to the Howick goalie who was outstanding.

Our second goal once again came from well worked field play that was finished off by Jaimee from the right post.  The final goal came from lovely play down the left hand side, with Jaimee showing true striker skill in dragging the ball around the defenders and use a sliding shot to gain a hat trick.

Strong displays by all players shook off the nerves of the first week. Our young members showed showed maturity and skill to back up their more experienced team-mates.  Final score 3-0 to MAGS.

v Diocesan School 2nd XI
4 May, 2017, at Dio Turf
MAGS wins 3-0

Goal scorers: Maisy Simpson, Shivani Unka, Lulu Grimes

The 2017 season started well with this win. We had lost five experienced players who finished school last year, so new players were needed to fill key positions, some for the first time. Two Year 9 students, Shivani Unka, who scored our second goal, and Anjali Panchia, have stepped up to take responsibility beyond their years.  Dhvani Mistry and Chantel Young have also joined the team after impressing with the Under 15s.

The first half saw MAGS start strong. Maisy Simpson scored with an amazing reverse shot to the top right hand corner of the net.  This goal seemed to rally the Dio 2nd’s and they showed they were very good at breakout hockey, putting pressure on our defence.  However, Makareta George Clark, who has moved from striker to defender, was solid and foiled any attack that was launched.  The first half ended with MAGS leading 1-0.

The second half saw an emphasis on staying close together and passing. Making the ball do the work took effect as players started to become tired.  Nerves had lessened, and some solid passing was seen within the MAGS play, but still Dio had the uncanny knack of picking up on loose balls and putting pressure on us.  Our goalie Laura Polo stepped up, and her commanding presence was good to see in this first game.

Our second goal was well worked down the right hand side with Lulu Grimes showing she will be a force to be reckoned with. She took the shot at goal and the ball was touched in the air and guided into the goal by Shivani.

The final goal was again created by the speed of Lulu Grimes, who was allowed to dribble into the circle and lob the ball at goal, and somehow going through the Dio keeper, who had an outstanding game.

The the final score was 3-0 to MAGS, a relieved team looking forward to the season ahead.

The First XI Boys’ Hockey team earned the right to compete in the First Division in 2017 by winning the Second Division Mayhill Cup in Pukekohe in Friday, 2 September.

In another dominant display, the boys won the final 6-1 against Kristin School. This allows them entry next season into the top level Rankin Cup/India Shield competition.

The team were unbeaten through the tournament, also winning against Rosehill 18-0, Rotorua 3-2, Trident 5-0 and Aquinas 2-0.

MAGS’ Under 15A Boys Hockey team won their Auckland Championship grade on Monday, 29 August, beating Auckland Grammar in the Final 3-0.

The boys dominated the grade through the competition, playing attractive, passing hockey and going unbeaten through the season. They have retained the title they won last year.

Through the grading games and championship round they accumulated 100 goals in 13 matches and only conceded 7. The goals were shared through the team with all contributing to its success.

Last year was a closely fought battle with St Kentigern College and Kings Colllege, but this year MAGS beat them 7-0 and 6-0 respectively. They then went on to beat Mt Roskill Grammar in the semi-final 7-1, and capped off a great season with a hard fought but comprehensive win in the final.

Team members were: Marcus Winter, Lachlan Pearce, Tyrelle Shannon, Lloyd Jensen, Zayden Bhana, Roshan Mistry, Joshua Pracey, Nathan Burton, Ethan Blanchard, Adithya Ashok, Finnegan Buick, Zac Lissaman, Ronak Mistry, Adish Shetty

Two U15 Boys teams make the A Grade

2016 has seen two MAGS teams make the A grade in the under 15 Boys Championship. Both came through grading with excellent results and qualified easily for the top grade. As of early August, the A’s have dominated the A grade scoring 36 goals. The B’s have found it more difficult; they have competed well building a good defensive record, but haven’t scored enough goals to get the results in their favour.

On Monday, 8 August, the two teams matched up against each other on the new astro turf at Mt Roskill Grammar school. It was a keenly contested game with the B’s defending strongly and making the A’s work very hard for their goals. The result was an 8-1 win to the A’s, which was only the third goal they have conceded in this competition.

The scorers were Roshan Mistry with 3, Finnegan Buick, Marcus Winter, Adithya Ashok, Josh Pracey and Lloyd Jensen for the A’s and Mercer Davis for the B’s.

There is one more round of pool games to be played before the semi-finals.

With the FirstXI playing in the SuperCity competition it is encouraging to see so many younger boys coming through the ranks to add depth to hockey in the school.