19 September 2017
The last time Taradale Intermediate Girls football team attended the Anchor AIMS Games was ten years ago, where they finished fourth overall. Nearly a decade later, the 2017 Taradale Intermediate Girls football team have done the unthinkable and captured a gold medal at the prestigious AIMS Games.
This year’s Anchor AIMS Games was held at Blake Park in Tauranga. The entire event would host over 10,000 competitors, representing 303 schools from across New Zealand, Australia the Cook Islands, Indonesia, and Tonga. There were 100 girls and boys’ football teams participating in the 2017 AIMS games this year, and Taradale Intermediate Girls football coach, Scott Burns could not be happier with his team’s showing.
“I am feeling ecstatic to have been able to coach the girls to the AIMS Games title which is an international event. We have built well over the season by winning the local Super Six Football title, the Ilminster Sports Exchange title, and the Second Division Hawke’s Bay Girls High School title. This was a great way to finish the season.”
While the girls have had an extremely successful 2017 season, it was never a guarantee that the group would pull off a gold title on the international stage. Going into the tournament, the girls adopted the mantra: pain is temporary, glory lasts forever. This quote resonated with the group throughout the competition, motivating and reminding them of what they were capable of.
Coach Burns reflects on the season and the heart and determination that his team played with over the course of the week at the AIMS Games.
“We lost a pool game to Glen Eden Intermediate 2-0 and deserved to not win as we started slowly. We ended up playing them again in the semifinal and won 4-3 in a penalty shootout. That showed the girls were determined to avenge that result and make our way to the final. In the final, we all knew that anything could happen but we wanted it more and goals to Milla Green and Stella Marshall, along with Jamie Evans hitting the post once or twice allowed us to be deserved winners of the final and tournament.”
Taradale Intermediate Girls football team have finished their tremendous 2017 season on a high note. The team was made up of thirteen players, six of which are current Central Football FTC players- four of these players are also part of the U14’s Central Federation team. In addition to coaching at Taradale, Scott Burns is also an FTC coach. Central Football Federation extends our sincerest congratulations to the hardworking and dedicated Girls Football Team at Taradale Intermediate.