Jodie hangs up hockey stick
By JIM CHALLENOR
MAKING the hop from local club hockey to State level is quite an achievement.
But for a select group of dedicated women's veteran players, the next level has been an even happier hunting ground.
At the top of the pile is Jodie Hamilton.
Hamilton, a local Glee club, Far North Coast and NSW Over-40 player, has used her final selection in the Australian team in the Pac Rim Series just completed in Melbourne to announce her retirement from the game.
Hamilton will be missed at all levels.
She has had a successful playing career as a regular member of many successful NSW and Australian veterans teams since the late 1990s.
A great ambassador for hockey, Hamilton's final exposure for NSW came in the Over-40 team this year. It finished with a silver medal when Victoria took out an exciting final after extra time.
Not to be outdone, Hamilton was joined at the national championships in Melbourne by a number of other FNC players.
Of these, Janis Hutton and Gloria McPherson were the most successful as part of the NSW Over-55s who brought home silver after their team also went down to Victoria in extra time.
Hutton and McPherson (Northern Star) have become cornerstones of the NSW machine.
In Melbourne both were honoured by NSW for playing more than 100 games for the sky blues.
The two stalwarts have now represented at every age division.
Among other FNC players to represent NSW this year are Margie Pembroke (Glee) in the Over-35s; Alison Parr (Ballina) in the Over-40s; Janet Gray (Glee) in the Over-45s; and Di Cahill (East Lismore) in the Over-50s.
Hutton had further cause to celebrate her successful year when she was recognised for her contribution to FNC Hockey, receiving the Women's Achievement Award.