Wallsend South Public School secure Paul Kelly Cup

WINNERS: Wallsend South Public School captured the Paul Kelly Cup at the Sydney Cricket Ground last week. Picture: Narelle Spangher
WINNERS: Wallsend South Public School captured the Paul Kelly Cup at the Sydney Cricket Ground last week. Picture: Narelle Spangher

Wallsend South Public School were crowned NSW champions in the girls’ division of the 2017 Paul Kelly Cup this month.

The finals of the state-wide AFL competition, which has been running for the past few months, was held at the Sydney Cricket Ground, on August 14.

It is the largest primary school AFL competition in NSW and the ACT and the cup is named after Sydney Swans legend Paul Kelly.

After a morning full of round-robin competition, Wallsend South Public School met Holy Family Primary School, Kelso, in the grand final with the Newcastle team finishing on top with a 25-point victory.

Craig Golledge, AFL NSW/ACT development manager for the Hunter and Central Coast said it was a great achievement for the school and region.

“Wallsend South Public School have always been one of our most supportive schools across the region and thoroughly deserve the success,” he said.

Belmont Christian College made it through to the final stage for the boys and also got to play at the SCG.

Meanwhile, Newcastle City capped a perfect season by overpowering defending champions Nelson Bay 10.11 (71) to 1.6 (12) in the Women’s Black Diamond Cup AFL grand final at No.1 Sportsground on August 26.

It was the third time in as many years since the competition started that the two sides traded blows in the championship decider.

City captured the inaugural crown before the Marlins staged a stunning fightback to win in 2016.

But the Blues were always in control on the scoreboard on Saturday.

It took several minutes before Newcastle City captain Audrey Gillingham kicked the first goal of the game. Nelson Bay skipper Lisa Steane responded directly but it was to be the Marlins’ only six-pointer of the game.

The Blues led 3.2 (20) to 1.4 (10) at the first break, 6.5 (41) to 1.6 (12) after a damaging second period then 7.10 (52) to 1.6 (12) heading into the last quarter.

Taylah Smith, Sarah Halvorsen and Ashlee Hayllar all scored two goals for City. Tayla  Braithwaite, Paige Mathewson and Meaghan MacDonald were the other scorers.

The win came six days after Halvorsen, Braithwaite and City teammate Jamee Ellis played key roles in Merewether clinching the Herald Women’s Premier League title.

Best on Ground was City’s Erin White.

City coach Nathan Wilmott was “super proud” of his charges.

In the men’s decider, to be played on September 2, Cardiff Hawks take on minor premiers Terrigal Avoca after a 61-point win over Nelson Bay in the preliminary final.

Terrigal beat Cardiff 17.8 (110) to 9.10 (64) in the semi-finals on August 19.