Kelso keep high schools hockey title

Kelso High School's winning hockey squad.
Kelso High School's winning hockey squad.

Kelso High School succeeded recently in retaining its South Schools 1st XV hockey tournament crown after a very closely contested competition.

Eight schools took part, with Jedburgh GS, Kelso HS, Earlston HS and Galashiels Academy in Section A, and Selkirk, Hawick, Berwickshire and Peebles High Schools in Section B.

Kelso’s first game was against Jedburgh GS and they got off to a great start, with a hat-trick from captain Lucy Murray and further goals from Emma Mack and Sophie Graham making the final score 5-0.

Next up was Galashiels Academy, which was an end to end game but finished as a goalless draw, with neither team able to find the back of the net. Kelso’s final pool game was against Earlston HS – the home side played some great hockey but Kelso defended well and again came away with a non-scoring draw.

This placed Kelso first in the pool on goal difference and put them up against Hawick HS in the first semi-final, where they stepped up the pace of their game and played some great hockey. A goal from Chloe Aitchison secured their place in the final.

Galashiels Academy, as runners-up in Section A, took on winners of Section B, Selkirk HS, and, in the second semi-final, neither could break the deadlock, so it went to running penalties, where Galashiels Academy managed to make it through.

A repeat of the earlier pool game saw Kelso defending well against the relentless pressure from Galashiels but neither team was able to score at the end of full time.

So, five minutes of extra time was then played and, within the first two minutes, Lucy Murray picked up the ball, ran the length of the field and scored to put Kelso in the lead.

Just before the final whistle, Rachel Burgher made it 2-0, sealing the win when she scored from a penalty corner.

Pictured is the victorious Kelso squad – (back row) Anna Woodcock, Kira McDonnell, Chloe Aitchison, Sophie Graham, Amy Purves, Shania Dalgliesh, Emma Mack, Skye Chatburn, Hannah Patterson, Lucie Coupek. Front row – Aimee Martin, Lucy Murray (captain), Rachel Burgher, Ginny Green.