The coldest day of the year, made worse by strong winds and heavy showers, provided less-than-ideal conditions for this year’s HTC Hockey tournament, held at the Adelaide University Hockey Club on Sunday 5 June.
Although the question of cancelling the event due to the horrific weather was considered, the SAAUCC Committee opted to press on with shortened games and no lunch-break.
Drenched and shivering, the Aquinas players and spectators stayed the course intrepidly and, in the end, successfully.
Coach Noah Waters, an experienced hockey enthusiast, said that he had never played in such unfavourable conditions.
‘The wet and slippery fields were challenging,’ said Noah, ‘and it was just so very, very cold.’
Both the men’s and women’s teams rose to the challenge to move undefeated through their first three games – against Lincoln, Flinders and St Ann’s. The last game for each was against St Mark’s.
The Aquinas men were up against a strong side which boasted a national player who probably made the difference in the end. The team finished second overall.
The Aquinas women went into their last match with the possibility that three colleges could finish on equal points. They needed to secure a win for Aquinas to keep the cup. In a tight and scoreless game, Aquinas persistently pressured the opposing goal without scoring until five minutes from full-time when the St Mark’s defence finally buckled. In the jubilation that followed, supporters and players alike immediately forgot their bedraggled and freezing state to celebrate the victory.