The Eastern States Tournament has grown in size and quality year on year and the 2016 event was no different. The highlight of the weekend was the impressive debut of the Queensland Women’s team, with a healthy mix of experienced and novice athletes there is a strong future for women’s lacrosse on the coast. 

Results from day one were in the Wombat’s favour. The men started their game strongly under the midday sun and fought to a healthy 6 goal lead by halftime (8-2). Coach Rosewarne must have shared a very inspirational half time talk as the Pumas were fired up in the second half, shutting the boys in blue out and pulling the deficit back to one goal. Fortunately for the Wombats, the last play by the Pumas was rebuffed and the dreaded overtime avoided. Final score 8-7 to the Wombats. MVP: Wes Proctor for his impressive (and vocal) efforts in the cage. MVP (QLD): Jean Bronkhorst.

The Women’s game started at 2.30pm as the sun was setting (give daylight saving a go QLD) and saw the teams evenly matched in the first half. The depth and experience of the NSW squad in the second half, with a hat trick by centre Annabel Williams (MVP) inspiring the charge to the Wombat’s final score of 8-4. MVP (QLD): Natasha Meyer.

A great social evening was organised by QLD lacrosse in the party town of Mooloolaba. Attended by both squads as well as the contingent of referees and umpires, the event continued well into the night and showed off the great camaraderie between the two States. 

Day two saw a mixed bag of results for the Wombats. The women, who’d found their form in the second half of game one, dominated this game from start to finish. Playing with spirit in defence and structure in offence (with a proud Coach Keet aka Britt Faulkner), the Wombats never looked like they were behind in this match up especially with the dominant performance of Rebecca Barry (MVP) from the centre draw ensuring the ladies saw plenty of ball possession. Final result: 10-4. MVP (QLD): Philippa Tyler

The men’s game was a much closer and fiercely contested affair. With neither team unable to secure clean possession of the ball off the faceoff, the midfield units with star LSM Michael Iverach (MVP), were working overtime cleaning up loose balls and putting bodies on the line to secure possession. The Pumas continued to play the structured offensive game that they found in game one, while the Wombats offense was hugely dependant on pieces of individual brilliance leading to a tied half time score of 5-5. The second half saw the Pumas continue to maintain ball possession in the right side of the field, with LSM James Tsilionis MVP (QLD) taking control of the offensive sets and converting two of his own. The Wombats continued to battle it out to the final whistle, but unable to clinch the win, going down 9-6. 

On aggregate scores, the NSW Wombats have defended the B.R. Rosewarne Perpetual trophy for another year. The close score lines reflect the passion and intensity of all the players involved and the commitment of both States to developing Lacrosse and providing opportunities for their players to compete at a high level. 

QLD lacrosse and Bruce Rosewarne and your support committee, you have outdone yourselves and put on a fantastic weekend of lacrosse. The referees, Steve and Jono, and umpires Tammy, Kari and Jan, you all did a great job and we very much appreciate your contribution to the game.  Thank you to Jan Jackson and the ALA for their support of this annual tournament. A special shout out to our committee members who helped make the magic happen: Juliet Austin, Caroline McLuckie, Jonas Hllr, Zoë Wheeler, Lina Teichmann, and Kate (Bob) Saunders we are much indebted to your awesomeness.

Congratulations to all the players, coaches and managers, we look forward to hosting you down in NSW next year!

Omar Al-Khayat
President, New South Wales Lacrosse