Maitland-Newcastle Teams defend NSWCCC Championship title

This month the Maitland-Newcastle Open Soccer Teams confidently headed to the NSWCCC Championship held at Valentine Sports Centre in Sydney.

Girls NSWCCC Football Championships

Convenor Liz Savovski from St Mary’s Gateshead knew our Diocese was going to achieve great things at the NSWCCC Football Selections, as many of the players had experience under their belts having competed in the previous year.

Day one began with a tightly contested game against a skilled Parramatta side, however, the girls’ determination and exceptional skill won them the match. The second game was against a combined Lismore/Armidale team. The team had a very strong start which ended with their second victory of the day.

The girls were evidently motivated on day two following such a successful start. Match one was close but once again, the girls delivered, coming away with another win. The final game of the pool round was against the Sydney Diocese Black team. The girls put on a flawless performance, winning three to nil.

The team remained undefeated with not a single conceded a goal, finishing on top of the pool, progressing straight to the final. The Maitland-Newcastle girls faced a talented team in CGSSSA. After a close start, the girls managed to score just before halftime. During the second half the team stepped it up, putting the opposition under a lot of pressure. When the final whistle blew the girls were crowned champions for the second year in a row. Coaches Loretta Browne and Liz Savovski were incredibly proud of the girls outstanding performance across the two days.

Players from Maitland-Newcastle Catholic Schools named in the NSWCCC team that will compete at the NSW All Schools Tournament.


Congratulations to the following girls:

  • Ruby Jones - St Mary’s, Gateshead
  • Madeline Howard St Mary’s, Gateshead
  • Molly Salvador SFX, Hamilton
  • Mercedes McNabb ASC, Maitland
  • Emma O’Hagan SFX, Hamilton
  • Saffron Grass St Clare’s, Taree
  • Claire Adams SFX, Hamilton
  • Alisha Ingrey - St Paul’s, Booragul


Other members of the Diocesan team included:

  • Sophie Howarth - San Clemente, Mayfield
  • Georgia Calculli - ASC, Maitland
  • Milla Doherty - Catherine McAuley, Medowie
  • Grace Kingett - SFX, Hamilton
  • Caoimhe Bray - St Joseph’s, Aberdeen
  • Peyton Hamilton-Vosilla, ASC, Maitland
  • Izzy Threlfo - SFX, Hamilton
  • Rianna James - SFX, Hamilton


 Under 19s Boys NSWCCC Football championships

The boys team headed into the championships with confidence after taking out the title in 2022. This year saw an outstanding array of talent from seven high schools in the Diocese.

Team captain, William Southcombe and Vice Captain, Hugh Browneled led the boys throughout the dual pool tournament. The Maitland-Newcastle Diocese boys were drawn in Pool A against teams from Lismore/Armidale, Orange, Parramatta and Southern Country.

The first match was a closely fought game that Maitland-Newcastle seemed to control but was unable to capitalise on with better ball retention until mid-way through the second half. Some brilliant individual play from Janni Rafty saw him cut in from the left wing and take on opponents before unleashing an unstoppable shot, helping the team to win their first game.

The team competed strongly against a tough Parramatta side and were unlucky to concede in the first half to a far post header. A scrambled further goal in the second half by Parramatta gave them the points in a hard-fought game.

Day two saw Maitland-Newcastle play Lismore/Armidale and the boys were keen to atone for the loss against Parramatta. They changed their formation to 4-4-2 and were immediately rewarded with the boys playing with more composure and assurity. Will Southcombe was dominating in the midfield and the boys in the back line were largely untroubled until a simple error late in the first half allowed the opposition to score with their only attempt on goal during the game. Will Walker had an outstanding game and never stopped trying while Lucas Johnson demonstrated superb efforts on the left side of the field.

The boys were disheartened knowing they dominated yet still came away unrewarded. Coaching staff Albert Papichio and Jacob Johns encouraged the team to believe in themselves and to trust their abilities and continue working together as a unit.

In the fourth and final game the boys were still playing for individual positions in the NSWCCC team, first place at this point was no longer possible, however with effort and application, second place was still feasible. Matt Goswell’s relentless pressure up front gave the team a well deserved lead, which was doubled by Janni shortly before half time.

The second half saw opportunities given to the fringe players and they all took their opportunities in the game to outplay the opposition with Matt taking another opportunity well for Maitland to now lead 3-0.

Baden Mehrton, Bowen Hine, Deacon Eriksson, Charlie Cotton and Hugh Browne played brilliantly in defence to consolidate the team’s position. Maitland Newcastle scored a further 3 goals to Janni, Lucas and Dash to round off a well deserved win 6-0.

Janni Rafty was named the coach’s player of the tournament for Maitland-Newcastle, he performed with incredible tenacity, skill and above all humility and was justifiably rewarded with a position on the NSWCCC team at the end of the tournament.

The boys finished in 2nd place with Paramatta advancing to the final, which they won.


The team consisted of:

  • Bowen Hine - St Bede's Catholic College, Chisholm
  • Ruben Fuentes - San Clemente High School, Mayfield
  • Oscar Archbold - St Joseph's College, Lochinvar
  • Hugh Browne - St Francis Xavier's College, Hamilton
  • Dylan Kinkade - St Clare's High School, Taree
  • Charlie Cotten - All Saint's College, Maitland
  • Riley Kent - All Saint's College, Maitland
  • Dash Baker - All Saint's College, Maitland
  • Baden Mehrton - All Saint's College, Maitland
  • Deacon Eriksson - St Joseph's High School, Aberdeen
  • Wil Southcombe - St Joseph's High School, Aberdeen
  • Matthew Goswell - St Francis Xavier's College, Hamilton
  • Ryder Egloff - San Clemente High School, Mayfield
  • William Walker - St Joseph's College, Lochinvar
  • Luca Johnson - St Joseph's College, Lochinvar
  • Janni Rafty - St Francis Xavier's College, Hamilton


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