Skolars Minis and Juniors Kick Off!

3rd March 2014

After what has seemed like an age for many of our youngsters, London Skolars Juniors and Mini’s finally got the chance to wear their red and green jerseys this weekend, as the London Junior League’s kicked off with 9’s festivals across the region.

There are 3 new age groups this year in what is a restructured league system. Skolars fielded squads across all age groups in U13’s, U15’s and U17’s.

Our U13’s (pictured above) travelled down to Southend ably supported by Adrian Fraine, Tim Cary and Kevin Ward, with Head Coach Ian Ackley away with work. A number of new youngsters made their debuts alongside lots of returning players from last year’s U12’s. The U13’s although smaller in stature than many of their counterparts produced some exceptional rugby to remain undefeated throughout the group stages of the tournament, eventually losing out in the semi-final to a large Croydon team. With Skolars Community department really targeting the Year 8 school age group in the next week or so it is hoped that some more gems can be discovered to build on what was an already outstanding opening.

Skolars U15’s (pictured below) led by Fred Pentecost and supported by Lorraine Pentecost, made the short trip to Newham with a squad of 18 to partake in their tournament. Again a number of new players made their debut at this age group and shone through in what is an exciting squad of players. The U15’s started slowly but managed to rack up a whole trio of results, winning two, losing one and drawing one. Like their U13’s counterparts they reached the semi-finals as the best placed runners up from the pool but unfortunately came unstuck against a good Brixton side going down by 3 tries to 1. There are some really talented lads at this age group and as the season goes on and the new players become more experienced you may see the U15’s shock a few people this year.

U15's 2014

Finally at Junior level our U17’s travelled to Richmond under the tutelage of Skolars 1st team player Dion Chapman. Missing a number of key players due to Union commitments at Allianz Park, the U17’s struggled with the size of some of their opponents and came unstuck in the first three games of the pool. However not ones to roll over, the U17’s regrouped and came away with a win in their final game of the tournament. Head Coach Dion Chapman was pleased with his sides efforts and commended the way they stuck at it as a team – he said ‘after one training session we always knew it was going to be tough to bring everything together but today was about starting as a group, and seeing what we had to work on.’

Meanwhile at New River over 30 youngsters ranging from U9’s right through to U12’s – commenced the first Mini’s training session of the new season with vigour and the army of Mini’s coaches were very impressed with their efforts. Due to the efforts of Skolars Community staff and the Mini’s coaches lots of new youngsters were enjoying their first taste of Rugby League and it showed as the young Skolars left the field with smiling faces and muddy hands. All in all it was a fantastic start to a very exciting season for our youngsters.

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