UTSNZ Team Waikato Recap
(03 Oct 2016)
After attending eight out of nine National Tertiary Championships throughout the course of the year, the University of Waikato have finished third place in the overall university standings.
The team finished on a total of 123 points, coming in behind two of New Zealand’s largest universities, the University of Auckland and the Auckland University of Technology (AUT), who finished first and second respectively.
Being the inaugural year of University and Tertiary Sport New Zealand’s (UTSNZ) new inter-tertiary sport initiative, finishing third was a great result for the university.
Waikato finished within the top three placings at nine events (male and female competitions combined), showcasing the sporting talent of students studying on campus in 2016.
The first competition of the year was 3x3 Basketball, which was held at home in the UniRec Sports Hall on the Hamilton campus. Waikato entered two men’s teams and one women’s side into the championship. After a hard fought final, the top Waikato men’s team finished second to AUT, while the women placed third.
While no women’s team attended the Futsal championships, a strong men’s team travelled to Palmerston North for the tournament. Waikato once again placed second, this time losing 4-3 to an unbeaten Victoria University side. Although disappointed with the loss, the team came away with the Golden Boot Award which was presented to Mahmood Alfarraji for being the tournament’s top goal scorer, netting an impressive 10 goals over three days.
Following the tournament, Sir Edmund Hillary Scholar Brayden Lissington, along with fellow teammate Dominic O’Sullivan were both selected in the New Zealand Men’s University Futsal team and later travelled to Brazil for the World University Futsal Championships.
The next event on the UTSNZ calendar was the National Tertiary Women’s Rugby Seven’s Championship which was held in Hamilton on the Waikato University fields. Team Waikato finished in second place at the tournament but due to player eligibility, the result was not counted.
Four students were selected in the tournament team, with Masters Student Lacy Tomu heading over to Swansea, Wales for the World University Rugby Sevens Championships shortly after.
The National Tertiary Table Tennis and Badminton Championships were held in Auckland over one weekend. The Waikato table tennis teams finished second in both the men’s and women’s competitions, while the mixed badminton team finished third overall.
Gaining another second place standing was the University of Waikato men’s volleyball team who finished runner-up to AUT after going to five sets in the final of the National Tertiary Volleyball Championship. The women finished third overall, coming in behind AUT and Victoria.
The National Tertiary 5x5 Basketball Championships were played down in Wellington and the university sent two teams down to compete. Although the men’s team didn’t get the result they were after, the women finished in second place behind a strong University of Auckland team.
Unable to find players to field teams in the hockey championship, the final inter-tertiary event that the university competed in was the National Tertiary Netball Championship. Team Waikato finished fifth in this event and Waikato University Premier Netball Team member Savanagh Cassidy was named in the New Zealand Universities Netball Tournament Selection Team.
After a great year of success in each of the competitions, as well as fantastic achievements from individual athletes in each code, the University of Waikato is looking to come back stronger in 2017.
Not only will Waikato strive to take out each individual championship, but they will also look to bring home the historic 93 year-old New Zealand University Shield which gets awarded to the university that accumulates the most points during the competition’s entirety each year.
To find out more about UTSNZ and the National Tertiary Sporting Championships, visit: www.utsnz.co.nz
Contact name: Kayla Wilson
Contact Phone: 07 838 4664