Hero photograph
Celebration central for Columba College!
Photo by Gretchen Beardmore


Mrs G Beardmore —

we would like to extend a massive congratulations to the Columba College 9A and 10A netball teams that travelled to Christchurch during the first week of the school holidays to compete in the Junior South Island Secondary Schools Netball Champs. Both teams performed with pride, skill, class and grace, and we are extremely proud of their efforts.

The SISS Junior Netball Tournament has been held in Christchurch for 24 years and has become an important pathway for players, coaches and umpires to develop their skills and experience the excitement of tournament play.

The tournament invites schools from across the South Island to participate and for our Year 9 and 10 representative netball teams, this annual event never fails to deliver the quintessential of competition on the netball calendar.

Columba College 10A had a very successful time away, developing as a team, playing some outstanding netball, and greatly enjoying their time away together representing the school. The team's effort and determination was clearly evident across the tournament, with some extremely tough losses on day one against Christchurch Girls, Central Southland and Marian College posing a big challenge for the girls to overcome early on. The weather gods opened the skies on day two, leading to torrential rain and surface flooding across the courts, so all games were disrupted and the tournament was eventually compressed into two days instead of three. It was an encouraging lift for our 10A team when they had a win over Avonside Girls High School (28-21) on the last day of competition. Great effort, 10A! We are extremely proud of your efforts. 

The Columba 9A netball team had an absolute stellar tournament, dominating their opposition and representing Columba College with distinction. The team played with incredible focus, showing their class every time they took the court with a display of impressive skill, teamwork, determination and drive. Results across the tournament suggest the team was in a league of their own, and their unity and passion to play for each other was clearly obvious from the sidelines. Wins during pool play of 36-16 (against St. Margaret's College), 37-8 (against Roncalli College) and 33-10 (against Verdon College) provided confidence and assurance that the girls had what it takes to compete with the best, and a washout on day 2 meant that the team could focus their energy and effort on preparing for finals play on Day 3.

A tighter quarterfinal match against Rangi Ruru to begin with on the Wednesday resulted in a 23-11 win for Columba, and a heart-stopping 27-25 win over Villa Maria followed in the semifinal! Well done, girls! All sights were then set on the formidable St. Andrew's College from Christchurch for the final of the Junior SISS Netball Championships. What a game it was! Tactical awareness, gameplay, athleticism, determination and self-belief lead this team of young players to seize the opportunity of finals netball and WIN the Junior South Island Secondary Schools Netball Championships for the very first time in Columba's history! 31-29! Congratulations 9A Netball. We are extremely proud of what you have all achieved. Well done!

A massive thank you must go to our coaching and management staff for your preparation, organisation and care of our two teams while away. Without your ongoing support the opportunity to attend tournaments like this would not be possible, so to Ella-Rose Lawrence, Laura Freeman, Lisa Turner (10A Netball), and Jodi Brown, Jen Kara and Tara  Blaikie (9A Netball), THANK YOU!! The Sports Department also extends a huge thank you to all the parents, families and friends who travelled to Christchurch and supported both teams from the sidelines, and to those who supported from home - you are all appreciated!

Well done, Columba Junior Netball. We are already looking forward to SISS Champs 2023! 

(For a detailed summary of results and team placings for both the Year 10 and Year 9 Grades, please see the attachments below).  

Photo Credit: BR Photography (ChCh). With thanks.