Exciting Scottish league day for junior Vikings

Newcastle Vikings’ under-16 boys team picked up a great win before losing twice in Sunday’s fourth round of the Scottish Handball 08/09 age group league in Kilmarnock.

The first of the mini tournament matches saw Newcastle get off to a brilliant start to the day, holding out for a 17-18 win in an excitingly close match against Tryst. Left-half George Archer netted the crucial winner as he top-scored with six goals, while centre Oliver Cass struck four, left-winger Charlie Pickett and right-half Zac Barbieri added three apiece, and line-player Brendan Fisher picked up a brace.

They then came up against a strong Troon side who ran out clear 25-11 winners (14-5 at half-time) on their way to topping the day’s competition with three straight wins. The Vikings’s boys nevertheless scored some great goals, with four from Pickett, a Cass hat-trick and Barbieri double, with Fisher and Archer each scoring one, while goalkeepers Joseph Meachery and Antounyous Hozein both made some fantastic saves.

Newcastle’s last match of the day saw them run Kelvinside close and were only a goal behind at half-time, but ultimately lost out 15-11. Cass dominated the Vikings’ scoring with six strikes, while Barbieri and Archer got two each and Fisher scored one. The result meant Newcastle’s boys finished in third place out of the four teams on the day, with their tournament placing points accrued over the season putting them fourth of the five clubs in the final 08/09 league table.

Youth team coach Adam Batley said “The guys did an amazing job today, they all did themselves proud! The lads started each game slowly but improved as the games went on, playing some brilliant counter-attacking handball and helped out by strong defence and big saves from goalkeepers Joseph and Antounyous“.

Meanwhile, Newcastle’s Edda Stenbom-Moss was the sole Vikings girl to make the trip but got the opportunity to play for Kelvinside’s girls. While only having five players, they came so close to beating East Kilbride’s EK82, Stenbom-Moss having a brilliant game and scoring twice as they narrowly lost 13-12 after being level 6-6 at half-time. The girls again played well in their second match and were only 6-4 down at the break, but found it tougher going in the second half as Tryst ran out 13-6 winners to top the day’s table.

Batley added “Edda showed off some great back-court skills, playing a crucial role for Kelvinside, as they gave both Tryst and EK82 competitive matches“.

Newcastle Vikings boys: Joseph Meachery (GK), Antounyous Hozein (GK), Charlie Pickett (7 goals), Brendan Fisher (4), Oliver Cass (13), Zac Barbieri (7), George Archer (9).

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