Junior Oztag players does Beerwah proud

Beerwah Oztag enter first ever state representative competition

By Kirra Livingstone

THE Beerwah Oztag venue etched its name in history, sending its first teams to the Queensland Junior State Championships.
The U14 girls, U13 boys, and U12 boys from Beerwah competed against teams from across the state, joining around 20 regions in total at the Sunshine Coast Stadium. The U14 girls secured a victory in one of their six games. The U12 boys won three of their six games and tied in one, narrowly missing out on the finals, while the U13 boys competed valiantly despite not recording a win.
Though none of the Beerwah representative teams qualified for the Super Series, an important step towards the Oztag Nationals later in the year, venue manager Steve Barons expressed his excitement at having three teams selected for the competition.
Regardless of the results, he emphasised the importance of ensuring the competitors had a great time.
“It was really exciting to have so many kids, particularly new players, selected in this state competition,” he said.
“In the lead up to the event, we focused on basic training to get everyone prepared without making it too complicated, emphasising simple gameplay.
“Whether we won or lost, I wanted the kids to create a positive atmosphere out there and ensure everyone was enjoying themselves.”
Barons added that the U12 boys, including his son’s team, were the most experienced, with most having competed at states before.
However, about a third of the Beerwah players selected across the divisions had never played representative Oztag before.
Each representative team comprised 16 players, with eight on the field at all times and unlimited substitutions to keep the teams fresh.
Looking ahead, the Oztag Senior State Champs are scheduled for March 8th to 10th.
While Steve Barons will be competing, he remains focused on training the juniors for additional Oztag opportunities during the venue’s off-season.