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UPE Girls dominate Wide-Bay U15 selections

UPE Girls at the Wide Bay selection trials
by Lee Rowlands

Wide Bay school sports held their U15 Girls selection trials this week in Gympie.

Teams from Bundaberg, North Burnett, South Burnett, Hervey Bay, Maryborough and Gympie were there to compete for places in the Wide Bay team to play at the State Titles in Toowoomba in June.

Nine UPE girls were there to represent the Bundaberg team, with 7 of them selected for the Wide Bay team.

United Park Eagles Director of coaching Paul Ash said "UPE continue to strive in providing our young girls with many football opportunities, through skilled training sessions and identifying pathways to higher representation, either through club or school programs. To have such a high percentage of girls make Wide Bay teams again this year is a credit to all coaches involved in our girls and ladies programs. Well done again Ladies, we at UPE are very proud of your achievements".

Div 2 ladies coach and club-president Mark Haster said "Paul Ash and I got together eight years ago at Moore Park beach Football Club. Paul has been coaching at a good level for many years and is very well respected in the school sport world. We share a passion for women's football even though Paul's daughter hasn't played and mine weren't, our goal from those days was to have a pathway for girls to progress to Ladies First Division AND beyond in a comfortable environment. We had one of the few under 16 girls teams and fostered that competition for four years but unfortunately a few of the other clubs didn't put the same effort into the female game as the men's. It's as simple as that for us.
Those girls that have made the Wide Bay team are a great group of young ladies who work hard, are inclusive and encourage all those around them. If we continue to offer an all girls team the standard of young ladies football will continue to rise" Mark also added that he felt some of the UPE girls who missed out may have been selected if they weren't from Bundaberg as there is an unspoken of quota and nine of the team were already from Bundaberg.

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