Winners Crowned at Under 18 State Championships
Holdfast Bay held host to juniors from all across South Australia with phenomenal games played each and every day.
Monday started with Boys and Girls Singles where Evie Exton (Marion) topped her section undefeated and +33 shots, not far behind was Mia Baldey (Clarence Gardens) finishing second in the section with two wins and +16.
Indi Vass (Curramulka) topped her section after beating younger sister Ava in her first round game. Indi finished sectional play undefeated and +31 shots, with Anda Panchawat (Port Noarlunga) finishing second in the section with 2 wins and +27 shots.
Post sectional, the girls singles were straight into Semi Finals with Section 1 winner, Exton defeating Section 2 Runner Up Panchawat in a close 21-18 match. In similar fashion, Section 2 winner Vass defeated Section 1 Runner Up Baldey in yet another closely fought 21-18 tussle. This see’s Exton and Vass face off in the Gold Medal Match, and Panchawat up against Baldey in the Bronze Medal Match.
A classic City V Country final was in stall for the small crowd brewing at Club Holdfast. Exton found herself with an early lead (7-1), but couldn’t hold off the country girl, Vass for long. After 17 ends, it was just a 13-10 lead to Exton. From here, Exton found a rhythm and was able to lock up the following five ends taking home her first Under 18 Singles Gold Medal, defeating Vass 21-10.
Panchawat proved too strong for Baldey taking home Bronze, with a 21-2 win.
The Boys Singles didn’t disappoint either, with 5 highly talented sections. In his last Under 18 Championships and one of the longest playing juniors in the field Cooper Hocking (Adelaide) finished his sectional play undefeated with +30 shots. Similar to the girls draw, a sibling face off with Tyson Black (Gladstone) and Adam Black (Grange) was on the cards for round one in section 2, where eventual section winner Adam, was on the winning end of this bout, knocking over younger brother Tyson 21-15. Adam also went on to finish sectionals undefeated.
Section 3 saw last years singles winner, Liam Coe (Gladstone) defeated by a young Kobe Jarman (Hope Valley) where Kobe finished his sectional play undefeated and +36 shots, while in Section 4 Hartley Riley-Tyler (Aldinga Bay) finished top of his section with +11 shots. Section 5 saw an inform Charlie Hicks (Grange) topping his section with +22 shots.
With 5 section winners, a next best was added to the Boys Singles line up where section winners were then ranked 1-5 and the 6th position to be filled by the next best.
Ranking number one and two were Black and Jarman, who received first round byes and saw themselves into the semi-finals.
Hicks saw himself through the knockout with a 21-5 win over Riley-Tyler, and Hocking also booking himself into a semi final taking a close 21-19 win over Coe.
Club mates Black and Hicks saw themselves facing off with Hicks bursting out the blocks with a 16-1 lead, to hold on with a 21-18 win putting himself into his first U18 singles, gold medal match. Not to be outdone with action; Hocking and Jarman put on a brilliant semi final where Jarman had his nose in front all match until end 22, where scores were tied. Hocking then secured a 3 to put himself just one shot away from his first U18 singles, gold medal match also. Jarman held strong fighting back with a 2 to put him to 19-20 and just two shots away… Jarman was able to run the jack into the ditch to grab two shots and see him in the final.
The Hicks and Jarman battle lasted 26 ends, with Hicks taking a 12-6 lead at halfway. Jarman held his own, but Hicks proved too strong taking his maiden U18 State Singles Championship. The Bronze medal match saw Hocking take a 15-9 lead after 13 ends, only for Black to catch him and make it 17 all and then 20 all after 21 ends. Black was able to secure the one shot required, seeing him take the bronze medal home.
To the Pairs, we saw three sections and a next best qualify for the Semi Finals. Section 1 saw part of last years winners, Sammy Milkins (Marion) and Singles Winner Evie Exton (Marion) top their section undefeated and +17 shots. Section 2 saw two country boys, Jayden Green (Kapunda) and Harrison Geater-Johnson also undefeated with +11 shots. Section 3 had Gladstone club mates Liam Coe and Tyson Black take the honours, also undefeated. This left the Grange pairing of Hicks and Black (Adam) sneak into the next best qualifying spot and a second chance at Gold.
In yet another sibling meeting, country pairing Coe and Black defeated the metro boys, Hicks and Black in an extra end nail biter where the metro pair secured one shot to take the win 13-12. In the other Semi, Green and Geater-Johnson couldn’t hold off the in-form Marion club mates, Milkins and Exton (16-13) which see’s an all metro final and an all country semi final.
The Marion pair pushed their way to a 8-3 lead after 6 ends, but the boys from Gladstone chipped away to hold a 13-12 lead going into the last end. Needing 2 shots or more to secure the lead, Milkins and Exton were able to do just that, picking up a 3 which see’s Milkins take the pairs back to back and Exton’s first Pairs Gold Medal.
In the Bronze medal match, the metro pairing of Hicks and Black were too strong for the young Green and mentor Geater-Johnson, with the final score 20-13 in favour of Hicks and Black..
To the triples, with two sections where section winners play off for Gold and section runners up play off for Bronze. We saw a team of three girls, all who represented South Australia at the recent nationals; Booth (Nuriootpa), Exton (Marion) and Panchawat (Port Noarlunga) top Section 1 and into the gold medal match, with Jarman (Hope Valley), Black (Gladstone) and Coe (Gladstone) finishing in second and into the Bronze medal match.
Adelaide club mates, Cooper Hocking and Tara Hurst teaming up with Cameron Hill (Berri) who finished top of their section who will meet the Booth, Exton and Panchawat in the gold medal match. Finishing their sectionals campaign in second place was Harrison Geater-Johnson (Arthurton), Charlie Hicks (Grange) and Adam Black (Grange) meaning they will meet Jarman, Black and Coe in the bronze medal match.
The gold medal match saw ‘the girls’ (Booth, Exton and Panchawat) out to a 6-0 lead, but after a 4 and then winning 9 of the next 10 ends Hurst, Hill and Hocking were box seat going into the last 5 ends with a 17-10 lead. After couple ends with scores going both ways, Hurst, Hill and Hocking were able to secure Gold with a 20-13 win over Booth, Exton and Panchawat.
In the Bronze medal match scores were tied 10-10 after 12 ends where the experience of Geater-Johnson, Hicks and Black took bronze from Jarman, Coe and Black (17-13).
Bowls SA would like to thank Club Holdfast for their superb greens, facilities and volunteers. We also all the wonderful officials that assisted throughout the week, your help is what make all bowls events successful.
We look forward to reporting on more events over the coming weeks.