New Coasters claim the shield in Under 15s Country Championships

The New Coasters have won the McDonald’s Under-15 Women’s Country Championships over Central Northern last week, claiming their victory at Jack Collins Oval in Raymond Terrace.

The 2017 champions are a team that draws on talent from the Newcastle and Central Coast areas, and looks to foster junior talent in their development teams.

The New Coasters won the toss and elected to bat first, opening with Madeline Case and Pyper Denneman, who combined for 11 runs to get the team off to a strong start.

Grace Dignam collected the biggest haul for the team, bagging 29 runs against 27 balls with a highlight of four 4s, while Clare Webber pulled the next highest with 26.

Webber faced the most balls, sending two 4s to the barrier and sent the New Coasters to their eventual win.

Sophie O’Shelley also collected 13 runs off 14 balls towards the end of the batting order.

O’Shelley shone in the bowling for the New Coasters, claiming two wickets in four overs and allowing just 19 runs as she kept Central Northern’s tally to 85 runs.

Hannah Green and Webber also combined for a wicket each in the New Coaster’s bowling.

For the Central Northern team, the best of the batting was Alyssa Ford, who scored 33 runs off 49 balls and finished her innings not out in the order.

Jessica Davidson and Isabella Cameron both scored 14 runs as the next best for the Northern rep squads.

New Coasters ran out the winners in the final at Jack Collins Oval by 23 runs in the end, and Dignam and Maddie McGuigan accepted the shield after their victory.

The road to the final for the New Coasters was through three straight victories.

In the opening match, Denneman led the New Coasters to victory with her 32 runs, and they defeated Western by 18 runs.

The second round saw them defeat ACT Southern by 8 runs, with the highlight of the match coming when Dignam claimed a half-ton of runs to out-score their opponents.

Finally, the closest match of the day came against Illawarra to book a place in the grand final, but the New Coasters were able to take out the win by just three runs to wrap up the regular rounds.

The grand final win was also sweeter for the North Coasters as it ended a period of three years where the North Coastal team held a monopoly on the shield, winning three Country Championships back-to-back.