The Spike or Victoria College Review October 1929
The 1929 season has just closed and the club has again had a most successful season. Although we have not carried off the Senior Championship the club has met with an all-round success which is very gratifying to the Committee. Our Senior A, "A" team finished as runners-up to Karori, losing the last match, which meant the championship to Wellington, after a hard and exciting game.
The Club had the distinction of obtaining second place in the Club Championship. The winners were Karori, with 137½ points, and 'Varsity were next with 125.
The experiment of putting in two teams in the Senior A Grade was in the main, justified, although the B team won only one match. With the withdrawal of Petone in the second round, we hold bottom place. Apart from the fact that owing to illness and injuries the best team was seldom able 'to take the field, the team suffered by the absence of several prominent players from Wellington during the greater part of the season. Even then stiff opposition was usually offered, especially against Karori in the first round, when the Blacks were down 2—1 until the last fifteen minutes of the game.
The Senior B Eleven was composed of players who, with three exceptions, were juniors last season. Under these circumstances it was not expected that the team would do well. As a matter of fact the team won five matches out of the thirteen played, and was never beaten by more than two goals, and only lost by that margin on three occasions. It is pleasing to record that they won a splendid game against Karori, who, at that time, were one point behind the leaders, and that they had their revenge on Training College in the final match of the second round, in which they won 6—2, and reversed the result of their former meeting when they lost 1—3. This last game was probably the best they played, since the team included four juniors and the forward line was re-arranged.
Our Junior team should, on paper, have won the competition comfortably. Unfortunately for them, however, they were sometimes drawn on by the Senior B team, and also occasionally played badly below form and were beaten. As an instance of their inconsistency the results of their two matches against Karori are typical. The first they won 1—0, and the second they lost 1—7. For the last four matches, it must be remembered, however, that they were without their captain, Cahill, who was probably their best forward.
The Third A team was practically the same team as last season's Thirds, and on the strength of this had a very successful season, finishing as runners-up to Karori. This team also suffered in that it was called upon by the Juniors on several occasions for their best players.
This season the Committee entered two teams in the Third Grade, the B team being almost 'to a man new to the game. Under the leadership of Stewart, who first as centre-half, and then as centre forward set them a fine example of perseverance and keenness, they performed very creditably indeed, and finished up in third place. Amongst other accomplishments must be recognised that of being the first team for two seasons to score against Karori. This honour fell to Stewart.
The B team has some very promising players, and if some of them continue to improve as they have done this season, there will be no reason to fear for the future of the club.page 51
We regard ourselves as fortunate indeed in having so many new members this season who have assisted the club so much, and in this connection we are pleased to notice the number of freshers who are joining the club.
The Club has to extend its congratulations to E. McLeod, captain of the First Eleven, who captained the Wellington representative team, and also the New Zealand team which defeated Australia 2—0 in the Second Test. G. S. Simpson, P. D. Wilson, and H. B. Massey all represented Wellington, and thoroughly deserved that honour. Members of the First Eleven who played in the representative trial match were J. L. MacDuff, P. D. Wilson, G. S. Simpson, E. McLeod, H. B. Massey, and F. H. Paul. In the Senior B Grade E. L. Greensmith, N. P. Robinson, A. J. Spence-Sales, and H. J. Bishop, played in the representative trial match.
Among the unofficial activities of the Club were a basket-ball match against the Women's Hockey Club, which resulted in a well-deserved victory for the men (the score cannot be given as the scorer lost count early in the match) and a most enjoyable dance which proved a great success. The Club's Annual Dinner was held on the 14th September at Barrett's Hotel, and a large attendance thoroughly enjoyed themselves before going on to the Haeremai Club's dance later in the evening.
Next year we are looking forward to the visit of an Australian University Hockey Team which is to tour the country, playing the four Colleges separately, and also participating in the Annual Inter-College Tournament for the Seddon Stick, which will be held in Wellington at the beginning of June. Victoria and Otago are joint holders of the Seddon Stick at present, and both intend to make a special effort to obtain a clear-cut win next year. The tournament should be even more than usually interesting for these reasons, and the Club considers that next season should be the best on record. It is certain that there will be plenty of attractions for new members.
In connection with the arrangements for the visit of the Australian University Eleven next year, three of the four New Zealand Colleges have pledged themselves to assist. Otago, Canterbury, and Victoria have all been able to guarantee their share of the expenses of the tour, so that even if Auckland fail to come in, there is every prospect of a tour commencing at Bluff and finishing at Wellington.
This should do a great deal towards popularising hockey in Wellington, and it is certain that hockey of a very high standard will be witnessed at the tournament next year, because even if the proposed Australian visit fails to eventuate, all the teams will be keen to have their members included in the New Zealand University team. It is probable, moreover, that in the event of the Australian players being unable to come to New Zealand, the New Zealand University Hockey Council will be asked to send a team to Australia.
The tournament will therefore be productive of more than usual enthusiasm, and in this connection we might mention that we hope to see a record attendance of Wikitorians at the matches. We can guarantee them their money's worth, and we feel sure that if they will once turn out to these matches, that they will become keen supporters of the game.
We append an extract from the Championship Table showing the position of the teams in the grades:—
|Matches played.||Won.||Lost.||Drawn.||Goals for.||Goals Against|
The team as a whole played fairly well during the season. It was not until the third or fourth game that the forward line settled down into any sort of combination, and for the last three games even this was missing owing to one or two of the forwards being absent on vacation. In the last match one of the regular line was away and the others were playing in positions new to them.
The backs, however, are to be congratulated on their consistently fine display during the season. Davis, in goal, has proved a staunch defender, and was unlucky in not making both the Wellington representatives and the New Zealand University team. Vietmeyer has played a consistently steady, if not brilliant, game throughout the season. Massey has played brilliantly at times, but has been patchy on occasions. For our half-line, Cumming, McLeod, and Wilson, we have nothing but praise. They have played splendidly and without a doubt the best half-line in Wellington.
The forwards, with the exception of Simpson, have been patchy. Paul played well after the first few matches, and we were unlucky that he was away at the end of the season.
The team is to be congratulated upon their display during the season, and their performance in being runners-up to Karori in the Senior A Championship. It was only bad luck which lost us the match against Karori, but it was bad play which allowed Wellington to beat us in the final game.
Detailed results of the matches are set out below:—
Senior A "A" Team.
v. Petone.—Won 4—2. Played on a very uneven ground, and with little combination. Simpson (3) and McLeod were the scorers.
v. Karori.—Drawn 2—2. A good, fast game, with the whole team playing well. Simpson scored both goals.
v. Y.M.C.A.—Won 3—1. A rather one-sided game with very little combination shown on either side. Lewis (2) and Simpson were the scorers.
v. Hutt.—Won 5—3. A good hard game. The forwards combined well and goals were scored by MacDuff (3), Simpson, Ferris and Wilson.
v. Wesley.—Won 3—2. This was a rather lucky win. Davis, in goal, saved the match which was played on a rough ground at Kilbirnie. Ferris (2) and MacDuff scored.
v. Wellington.—Won 4—1. This was a rattling good game. The forwards and backs both played well. Simpson (2), Ferris and MacDuff scored.
v. Petone.—Won 5—1. This was a very scratchy game. Petone put up a poor showing. Lewis (2), Simpson, Ferris and MacDuff scored.page 53
v. Karori.—Lost 2—3. Played in mud, water, and pouring rain. It was anybody's match, but bad tactics lost it for us. Simpson scored both goals.
v. Y.M.C.A.—Won 7—1. This game was very one-sided, the Y.M. backs being unable to hold our forwards at all. Lewis (5) and Simpson (2) were the scorers.
v. 'Varsity B.—Won 9—1. The B.'s backs were very weak and our forwards ran through them repeatedly. MacDuff (4), Simpson (2), Wilson (2), and Lewis were the scorers.
v. Hutt.—Won 3—0. A very good game, but Hutt became rattled towards the finish. Simpson (2), and Lewis scored.
v. Wesley.—We played with only two of our usual forward line, but the backs played excellently. Many chances were missed in the forwards. MacDuff scored both goals.
v. 'Varsity B.—Won 5—1. This was a very scratchy game played on a Wednesday. Both teams included several lower grade players. Lewis (2), Sykes (2) and McLeod were the scorers.
v. Wellington.—Lost 1—2. We started well but finished badly. The forwards were disorganised and for once the backs did not play up to form. Simpson scored our only goal.
Senior A "B" Team.
This team was composed mainly of players who played in the Senior B team which won the championship last season. With most of last year's stars available and some promising new blood, the team promised to do well. Unfortunately, however, they completely failed to show good form, and being in addition unlucky in the matter of injuries, they were decisively beaten on most occasions.
Their match against Karori in the first round, when they should have won but for sheer hard luck, their two wins over Petone, and their draw against Hutt, are the only purple patches in a somewhat drab season.
It is certain, however, that in promoting the team to the Senior A Grade, the Committee acted wisely, because they obviated a bye in this grade, and did not run the risk of being labelled pot-hunters, which would almost certainly have happened had the team played Senior B again.
The personnel of the team was as follows:—Goal, French; full-backs, Lucas, Gover; halves, Bollard, Hain (captain), Hall; forwards, Read, Gallus, MacDonald, Priestley, Bailey.
Owing to absence from Wellington and injuries, however, this team was only able to take the field on rare occasions. Others who turned out to fill vacancies were McArthur, Waleran, Francis, and Fleming.
Senior B Team.
v. Hutt.—Lost 2—3. Although in this game we were rather at a disadvantage as none of the five forwards had played together before we executed some fine movements which were spoiled by bad shooting. Until ten minutes before time we had failed to score, but we finished strongly. Bishop scored both goals.
v. Wesley.—Lost 4—5. This game was played on the day after the Capping Ball, and except for a spell of ten minutes immediately after half-time, we ran all over Wesley. In those ten minutes, however, they scored five goals, and we found the leeway too great to recover. In the last ten minutes, however, we very nearly pulled the game out of' the fire. Spence-Sales, Millen, Bishop and Greensmith scored our goals.
v. Huia.—Lost 2—4. For this match we were without Robinson, our centre-half and captain, and as a result failed to show our usual combination. Spence-Sales, by clever solo work, got two goals just before time.
v. Karori.—Lost 1—2. This was one of the most keenly contested matches of the season, and we held the lead until the last ten minutes, when the superior pace of the Blacks enabled them to score twice. Robinson netted our goal.
v. Petone.—Won 4—1. This was rather a scrappy game, but will go down to history as our first win. The three halves all played well and the forwards received plenty of the ball. But for bad shooting the score would have been doubled. Millen, Greensmith, Robinson, and Bishop scored our goals.
v. Y.M.C.A.—Won 8—4. This game was very one-sided and the defence weak. At half-time we were leading 5—1, and in the second spell took things less seriously. The Y.M.C.A. left half was their weakest link, and left Bishop practically unmarked. Bishop scored 6 goals and Greensmith and Spence-Sales one each. The Y.M.C.A. goalie page 54 must be congratulated on the splendid game he played, and had his backs supported him as they should have done, Y.M.C.A. would have won.
v. Training College.—Lost 1—3. We struck a day on which we could do nothing right, and lost to the better team. Greensmith scored our goal.
v. Hutt.—Lost 1—3. Here we played a much improved game, and held the lead until just before the end, when Hutt scored three goals. The match finished in the dark and this tended to spoil one of the best and most enjoyable games of the season.
v. Wesley.—Lost 1—2. This game was played on a ground reminiscent of the Third Test match against the Springboks in 1921, and frequent stoppages were necessary while the referee wiped the mud out of someone's eye. Good hockey was impossible, and it was anybody's game. Fleming shot our goal.
v. Huia.—Lost 2—3. A most exciting match, played at Newtown Park. Huia, who eventually won the championship, had to go all they know, and but for really hard luck we would have won. Spence-Sales and Bishop both hit the post with hard shots. Robinson and Bishop got the goals.
v. Karori.—Won 4—1. In this game we had for once an even break as regards luck, and after a splendid game, ran out winner. Karori were then one point behind the leaders.
v. Petone.—This game was first postponed owing to the state of the ground, and then cancelled, much to our disgust, as we flattered ourselves we should obtain another win.
v. Y.M.C.A.—Won 3—1. This game was one of the hardest we had, and we had to go all out to win. The Y.M. halves were right on their game, and had our forwards extremely well marked. In addition to this, selfishness lost us at least two goals. The gem of the match was Robinson's goal from a penalty corner. Hayes and Greensmith scored the other goals.
v. Training College.—Won 6—2. Drastic changes were made for this game. Spence-Sales went out to the left wing. Bishop was moved from inside-right to centre, and Warburton brought up from the Juniors to inside-right. We had four Juniors playing, but on the day would have beaten any team. At half-time the score was 2—2, and in the second spell our new forward line combined like clockwork to score four goals. Another point in which they showed up was the following-in of the shots. Bishop scored 3 goals and Warburton, Spence-Sales and Greensmith one each.
The following played for the team:—Maciver, Foot, Hurley, Mills, Button, Buxton, Bertram, Robinson (captain), Jefferies, D. Foster, Wilson, Warburton, Bishop (vice-captain), Spence-Sales, Greensmith, Millen and Hayes.
The form displayed by this team was on the whole disappointing. They won several hard games, but succumbed to weak teams on one or two occasions, and this put their chances of winning the championship definitely out of reach fairly early in the season. Consequently there was no incentive to make them play up. Another factor was that several times they were drawn by the Senior B's. We may mention in passing, however, that all the Juniors who played Senior B played well up to standard. Especially was this so in the Senior B's last match, against Training College, when the four Juniors gave excellent displays.
The following played for the team:—Foot, Maciver, Petherick, Kennard (vice-captain), Bartram, Wiggs, Duxton, J. F. Foster, D. W. Foster, Wilson, Belcher, Cahill (captain), Thompson, Cousins Keys.
Results of matches played are as follows :—v. Wellington A: Won. J. Foster and Belcher (2) were the scorers. v. Huia: Lost after the Capping Ball. Belcher scored for Varsity. v. Y.M.C.A.: Won. Cahill, Warburton and Cousins scored. v. Wesley: Won.. (Cahill (3), Warburton and J. Foster scored. v. Hutt B: Lost. D. Foster and Cousins scored, and we were awarded a goal after a penalty bully. v. Hutt A: Lost. Cahill scored our goal. v. Huia B.: Won in the rain. Cahill and Warburton scored a goal each. v. Karori: Won. Warburton scored. v. Wellington B : Lost. This was the only match in which we fialed to break our duck. v. Karori: Lost. Warburton scored, v. Hutt B : Won. H. Williams (4), Cousins, Wilson and Belcher scored.
Third Grade A Team.
This team was composed of most of last year's third grade team, and accordingly gave every reason to expect that they would have a good season. This proved to be the case, and apart from Karori, there was no team in the grade capable of beating them. Next season the Club will probably promote them and run two junior teams.page 55
After one bad set-back at the commencement of the season, the team settled down and played very consistently, losing only one more match and finishing up in second place in the Third Grade Championship.
Apart from a few changes throughout the season, the team was as follows:—Goalkeeper : Benjamin. Full-backs: Lewis, Nash. Half-backs: Wiggs, Clark (capt.), McIntosh. Forwards: Gardner, Thompson, Struthers (vice-capt.), Gibson, Joseph.
Results:—Matches played, 12; won, 9; drawn, 1; lost, 2. Goals for, 26; goals against, 20. Championship points, 19. Result: Runners-up. Results in detail:—
v. Karori.—Lost, 0—10. This was the first match of the season, and apart from being out of training, some of the players were new and inexperienced and could do very little against the superior combination of their opponents.
v. Petone.—Won, 2—0. In this game the combination between backs and forwards had improved remarkably, although the uneven nature of the ground spoiled many good movements. Struthers and Gibson goaled.
v. Wesley.—Won, 2—1. This game was a very hard one, and for the latter part we were kept on the defence, and only strenuous efforts on the part of the backs prevented our opponents from scoring. Struthers and Thompson scored.
v. Hutt.—Won, 5—1. Although one player short, the team in this match played very well, the combination throughout the team being exceptionally good. Off-side play, however, due to over-eagerness, spoilt many chances of scoring. Struthers (2), Thompson (2), and Gibson were successful in goaling.
v. Wellington.—Won, 4—0. This game was very bright and interesting and about the best to date. The defence was good, but many chances were missed by the forwards, leaving the scoring to Struthers, who notched all four goals.
v. 'Varsity "B."—Won, 3—2. The condition of the ground for this game spoilt much of the play, but the forwards attacked strongly and the backs defended well. The score gives a good idea of the evenness of the game, the result of which was in doubt right to the final whistle. Struthers, Gibson and Gardner netted.
v. Karori.—Lost, 0—4. The superior combination of our opponents in this macth was responsible for this defeat, although the game was more even than the score suggests. The backs played very strongly, especially in the first spell, and the forwards were very unlucky in not scoring.
v. Petone.—Won, 2—1. Played under unspeakable conditions on a very bad ground, where good play was impossible. This was anybody's game, Struthers and Belcher each scored one goal.
v. Wesley.—Drawn, 1—1. Luck was decidedly against us in this game, as we were attacking practically the whole time, and our opponents were very seldom in our territory. Numerous chances were missed throughout the game, and the shooting was very poor. Gibson was responsible for our single score.
v. 'Varsity "B."—Won, 2—0. This was a very hard and even game and much enjoyed by both teams. The defence and combination were good, although some chances of scoring were missed. Gibson and Belcher goaled.
v. Hutt.—Won, 2—0. This game was not very outstanding as regards combination, and as usual, many chances went begging. Struthers and Thompson scored, the latter's goal being a particularly brilliant solo effort.
v. Wellington.—Won, 3—0. In this, the last game of the season, both backs and forwards had plenty of work to do, and the combination throughout the team was good. It was a fitting close to a successful season. Struthers (2) and Keys netted.
The play of Struthers, who scored 13 goals during the season, was largely responsible for the success of the team in the grade. This player, who was awarded the Hain Stick as the most improved novice last season, promises to make a fine forward, and to become a most valuable player to the Club.
During the season a match was played between a combined Third Grade team and the Junior team, resulting in a win for the Thirds by one goal to nil.
This team were to a man new to the game, and it says much for their keenness and attention to training that they finished third in the Championship. It was significant that of the few players who attended training in the Gym. on Tuesday nights, 80 per cent, were third grade players. The team may well be proud of their record in this their first season, and the Club is glad to see such talent in its lower grade teams. There will be no need to fear for the Club's future while these players are with us. The team was ably led by Stewart, who showed that he possesses qualities which will take him a long page 56 way in the game. At first he played centre-half, but for the last eight matches played centre-forward. In those eight games he scored 11 goals—a record to be proud of.
Results of the team's matches are appended:—
May 11.—v. Wellington: Lost, 1—6 (Camp 1). Played with three men absent.
May 18.—v. Karori: Lost, 0—6.
June 1.—v. Petone: Won, 2 —1 (Etherington, 1). Petone did all in their power to assist us, evening scoring a goal.
June 8.—v. Wesley: Won, 2—0 (O'Sullivan 1, Stewart 1).
June 15.—v. Hutt: Won, 4—1 (O'Sullivan 1, Shield 1, Stewart 2).
June 22.—v. 'Varsity A: Lost, 2—3 (Etherington 1, Stewart 1).
July 13.—v. Wellington: Won, 8—0 (Dowling 1, Scott 1, Mouat 1, Stewart 5).
August 3.—v. Karori: Lost, 1—4 (Stewart 1). Stewart had the honour of being the only man for two seasons to score against the Karori team.
August 17.—v. 'Varsity A: Lost, 0—2.
August 31.—v. Wesley: Won, 1—0 (Stewart 1).
September 9.—v. Hutt: Won by default.
The regular team was as follows:—Currie, Dowling, McDougall, Mouat, Lambert, Scott, Shield, O'Sullivan, Stewart, Etherington and Lamb.
Struthers played one game for us and others who played at some time or other during the season were:—Camp, Fabian, Joseph, and Caughley.
Women's Hockey Club.
We look back over the season without many regrets—at the games we might have won, at the games we should like to have won, but without any regrets at the games we did win. There were two, of which the junior team has already figured conspicuously in last issue. After that it was duly recorded, commented upon, and forgotten by the carefully disguised people who write the sports columns.
The senior team's win passed unhonoured and unsung, owing to the secretary having forgotten to notify the Association. We are not going to make public the secrets of the reporter, because, although they see very little of most of our games and nothing of others, they write accounts of Homeric struggles in which our teams make a gallant defence, or might have won if—but everyone has heard of our forwards. These and sundry other sops to our vanity appear in the "Sportsman's" column, so we feel that it will do no harm to write our own description for how could someone who was not there do justice to it?
There is little to say, however. The six survivors of the devoted band fared forth, lightly armed to engage seven Ramblers, each thirsting for two championship points. We got them. The scorers are far too modest to have their names mentioned, so we will, content ourselves with saying that the score 6—1 was a fair indication of the progress of the game, except that it was obtained in the second half, and that it was nothing to what we can do when we like!
We entered a senior and a junior team in the Seven-a-side Tournament. The junior team, after playing out time with no score, was defeated by a shot across the goal-line. The senior team was more fortunate, winning 1—0 but losing 1—3 in the second round.
We have one Wellington representative in our midst—our goalkeeper—Miss Huggins. It was whispered that two of our juniors were likely people for the junior representative team, but the vacation and the consequent defaulting of the games spoilt their chances. We take this opportunity to appeal to any people who have a desire to play hockey to join the Club next year. We would offer as one of its attractions an alleged basketball match with the Men's Hockey Club.
This took place on Tuesday, 20th July, this year, and resulted in a win for the Men's Hockey Club by some score unknown then, and since multiplied 20 times. Our sympathy goes out to their unfortunate wives, if they have any, and our parting advice is "Tame him first if he plays hockey." Of course we understand that it is the spirit of the game that matters and not the points, because that is what the senior "A" team said when it was beaten by the Wellington team.