North Coast’s top junior footballers finish summer with big win

The Northern Heat representative team.


THE North Coast’s best junior Aussie Rules talent recently finished their representative summer program playing for the Northern Heat.

The Northern Heat and AFL North Coast players played their last rep match of the season in a dominant 23.10 (148) to 2.3 (15) win against the Southport/Beenleigh Colts.

The Northern Heat squad overcame an extremely challenging week of venue changes, time changes, and a COVID outbreak to record an outstanding victory against the Southport/Beenleigh Colts.

The Northern Heat representative AFL program comprises the best Under 16, 17, and 18 players from the North Coast and North West regions.

Players are selected into the program based on their performance at the Northern NSW Challenge.

The off-season program exists to extend the representative pathway for the players of the regions and provide them with a further avenue to build their game ahead of making the full-time transition into senior footy.

The program finishes with a match against the Southport Colts and from this, Heat players have been invited to trial with the Southport Sharks team that plays in the East Coast/VFL competition.

Paul Taylor, AFL North Coast Community Football Manager, praised all involved with the program.

“The players and their families make a huge commitment to be involved in the program, travelling hundreds of kilometres to slog it out over summer so that they can be fitter, better players with a higher footy IQ,” he said.

“This year we’ve faced huge challenges with both our last training session and the match due to the weather and COVID, but today is a just reward for all of the hard work they’ve done individually and as a group and each and every one of them is extremely well prepared to have their best season of club footy.

“Huge thanks to the Southport VFL club who worked tirelessly so the match could go ahead.

“They could easily have pulled the pin through the week but the feedback from the club’s General Manager is they really admire what our program is achieving and wanted to make sure that the match would proceed.”

Taylor said the result reflected the strength of junior football on the North Coast.

“The squad produced an amazing performance to beat Southport/Beenleigh Colts by over 130 points and demonstrate that the future of footy within the North Coast and North West is in great shape.”

The Heat program now wraps up for 2020/21, with players now focusing on their club football and then later in the year will have the chance to switch into representative mode with the North Coast Force and AFL North West rep teams respectively.

The next Northern Heat squad will be selected based on the performances of players in their local rep programs.



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