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March Madness for SCS Sport

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More than 60 students arrived to trial for the Sydney Archdiocesan Netball team. PHOTO: Sydney Catholic Schools

Sports starts from across Sydney Catholic Schools have showcased their skills this month in selection trials in soccer and netball.

Netball: Life is better with goals

It was all systems go at Netball Central in Sydney Olympic Park as 60 primary students from six Sydney Archdiocesan zones competed to represent Sydney Catholic Schools (SCS) at the netball MacKillop Trials.

Many goals and skills were on show to selectors and parents on Monday 15 March, as well as a group of Year 9 volunteer students from Domremy Catholic College who helped umpire the games.

One of those umpires, Emily Fernandez, said she was super impressed with the talent on show and pleased she and her peers got to referee this important event.

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Convenor for the Sydney Archdiocesan Netball Selection Trials, Caroline Loneragan, described it as “a good day.”

“We’ve been learning things as we go,” said Loneragan. “The process was very good with neutral selectors and makes sure we have the best outcome for all the girls.”

Selectors, who are independent and neutral, had the tough job of selecting 10 talented players to continue their pathway towards regional representation.

Fittingly, Suncorp Super Netball powerhouses Sydney Giants and NSW Swifts were both training on adjacent courts preparing for their upcoming season.

One of those players was none other than SCS alumna and current Australian Diamonds’ goal attack, Kiera Austin, who was kind enough to come over and chat with some of SCS’ students. The national netball representative also took a few cheeky selfies, much to her young fans’ delight.

Selected team for MacKillop netball team 2021
The 2021 Sydney Archdiocesan Netball Squad. PHOTO: Sydney Catholic Schools

Convenor Loneragan taught the netball superstar at Holy Spirit Catholic Primary North Ryde and credits the representative pathway offered at SCS for helping set her, and other elite sport stars like her, on their future road to success.

“Kiera managed to get to the MacKillop level very comfortably; that pathway allows kids who play at an elite level to get to representative stages,” Loneragan said.

As the day drew to a close, the Sydney Archdiocesan team was announced. The chosen few will now move onto the MacKillop Trials in Canberra on Friday 30 April.

Sydney Archdiocesan Team:

  • St Charles Ryde – Cyla O’Donahue
  • St Kevin’s Eastwood – Carla Bragg
  • Villa Maria Hunters Hill – Mila Raven
  • St Joseph’s Oatley – Lexi Economou
  • St Therese Mascot – Renae Richardson
  • Holy Family Menai – Emma Stark
  • Our Lady of Fatima Caringbah – Grace Graham
  • Our Lady of Fatima Caringbah – Emme Pierce
  • St Catherine Labouré Gymea – Lacey Byrne
  • St Therese Padstow – Hannah Elvin


Soccer: The goal is excellence

The heavens threatened to open up all day at Marco Reserve, Panania, as our primary schoolers battled it out for a place in the Sydney Archdiocesan Soccer team that will attend the MacKillop trials.


More than 60 boys and just over 50 girls from six zones across the Sydney Archdiocese vied fiercely on Tuesday 16 March for only 12 spots in each of the two teams.

There were some fine skills on offer, amazing goals and sensational saves, making it extremely difficult for selectors to pick the standout performers.

“The high calibre of skills on offer made it tough to pick a team and the quality of players keeps getting better every year,” selector Anna-Kate Turnbull said.

Rene Vella, Sydney Catholic Schools’ Education Officer: Pre to Post Sport, was grateful the rain stayed away for the greater part of the day, arriving only during the final game despite the ominous storm clouds.

“We had very competent staff on the day and the weather held off which was great,” Vella said.

“Parents and students were cooperative and took everything on they received from the briefing which all culminated in a very smooth day.”

Soccer is Sydney Catholic Schools’ most popular team sport.

“It’s the largest event we run outside of swimming, cross country and athletics, and a sport that is consistently growing in popularity” – Rene Vella

One of the standout boys of the trial, Isaac Andrews, is looking forward to the next step in his soccer pathway.

“I’m really excited for the MacKillop trials and hopefully I can get selected (to progress),” said the silky midfielder.

The chosen few will now move onto the MacKillop Trials in Goulburn on Friday 23 April.

Sydney Archdiocesan Boys Team:

  • Holy Spirit Carnes Hill – Harper Surjan
  • John the Baptist Bonnyrigg Heights – Pietro Sanfilipo
  • Our Lady of the Assumption North Strathfield – Zayn Al Ghazawi
  • St Catherine of Siena Prestons – Luca Tiani
  • St Christopher’s Panania – Emil Katrib
  • St Declan’s Penshurst – Aidan Loboja
  • St Joseph’s Como-Oyster Bay – Jameison Leigh
  • St Luke’s Revesby – Cooper Borg
  • St Michael’s Meadowbank – Santino Dandolo
  • St Patrick’s Sutherland – Jackson Aungle
  • Villa Maria Hunters Hill – Oscar Andrews
  • Villa Maria Hunter Hill – Isaac Andrews

Sydney Archdiocesan Girls Team:

  • Mary Immaculate Bossley Park – Mia Odisho
  • Our Lady of Fatima Caringbah – Jacinta Knowles
  • St Ambrose Concord West – Natasha Manuele
  • St Andrew’s Malabar – Alexis Hudson
  • St Catherine Labouré Gymea – Keziah Behringer
  • St Charles’ Waverley – Isabella Moran
  • St Francis Xavier’s Lurnea – Lara Kanjo
  • St Joseph’s Oatley – Libby Burgess
  • St Kevin’s Eastwood – Ruby Betro
  • St Martha’s Strathfield – Ava Boutros
  • St Patrick’s Kogarah – Jewel Bonner
  • St Paul of the Cross Dulwich Hill – Lotus Yenjai
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