AKS Year 8 are once again proving a force to be reckoned with on the local sports scene when they came out on top in the latest Fylde & Wyre Handball Tournament held at Carr Hill. Like the Year 9, the girls were only introduced to handball at the start of the term but they have taken to it like ducks to water using their athleticism, netball skills and games ability to adapt to the new game and make a winning start in their first tournament.
A squad of 18 excited and enthusiastic girls formed an A and B team and played matches against local opposition Carr Hill, Lytham High and St Bedes, as well as having to play against each other. It was impressive to see how the girls, after a few handball sessions, had acquired and transferred skills under pressure in the competitive matches. All girls' progress and their knowledge and understanding of the rules is commendable.
The A team won all four matches to come out on top at the end of the tournament, not only finding the net frequently but impressively managing not to concede any goals throughout the tournament. With a large squad we also fielded a B team who played against all A teams and drew 1 and lost 3 matches.
In their first competitive handball games it was a steep learning curve for all the girls getting to grips with the rules and the tactics of the game but they rose to the challenge superbly and everyone got better and better as the games progressed. Defenders Amelie L, Olivia M, Lucy P, Beth R and Madi R protected their goal well, intercepting many passes to regain possession and then quickly set up the attack. Anna Du and Maddi B worked tirelessly in the centre, hassling the opposition and linking well with pivot players Carys B, Katie T and Patsy C who were crucial in support play and helping to set up attack. Wingers Amelie S, Charlie B, Leila S , Scarlet D moved swiftly up the court to put themselves in advantageous shooting position with the highlight being the expression on Ava N’s face when she scored her first goal for the team. Last, but not least, the goalkeepers Lucy B, Kate S, Laura K and Katie T impressively took control of their goal making many essential saves as well as setting up the counter attacks.
A superb afternoon which saw AKS record their first ever victory in competitive handball ! All the girls improved both their techniques and game understanding and enjoyed the challenge of this new game.
The A team as tournament winners now play in the final against the other tournament winners and all girls are looking forward to having the opportunity to play more matches.