It was the capper to a successful season for the Gore Wanderers senior women’s team when it won both division 1 and the knockout plate in the Southland-wide football league.
DeVine Hair and Beauty Gore Wanderers won the division 1 title through a round-robin style points system, but faced off against Queens Park in the plate final.
Club president and coach Mel McKenzie said the final was always going to be a close game, and it resulted in the Wanderers winning 1-0.
“Winton was clipping at our heels the entire competition – they were the closest to us the whole time,” McKenzie said.
“It was a blimmin’ great final and while we didn’t hit the back of the net as much as we would’ve liked, we were pleased with the result,” she said.
McKenzie was a former player and said she was “absolutely itching to go out there – it was such a relief when that final whistle came”.
The team had produced a great season and one that McKenzie was incredibly proud to be a part of.
“They’re just a great bunch of girls – they were a stronger team by the end of the season.”
The squad was made up of 22 girls who ranged in age from teenagers to early 40s.
“It’s a real range of experience this time around; the senior players have really looked after those young ones,” she said.
“Some of those young ones are super-quick though, so the older girls are learning just as much from the young ones as the young ones are from them.
“They all have such a great amount of respect for one another,” McKenzie said.
The team combined well together, and McKenzie said it was important to support the younger players to keep them interested in football.
The team supported its sponsor, DeVine Hair and Beauty, and had a “girls’ day out” planned.
“We spend time together off the field. We have social events lined up.”
The team last won division 1 in 2014 and the knockout plate in 2012.
McKenzie said it had been an “absolute ripper” of a season.
“They’ve blown my expectations of them, which is full credit to the team – they’ve worked hard and I’m really proud of them.”