Best mates selected to share state dream
PREPARING for your first national titles can be as daunting as it is exciting.
However for Ipswich hockey cousins Lile Lenaghan and Hayley Petersen, representing Queensland later this year will be so much more enjoyable.
Centre half/midfielder Lile and goalkeeper Hayley are Swifts and Ipswich under-13 teammates.
As Lile's proud mum and Swifts Hockey Club president Kirsty Lenaghan shares, the rising talents have another attribute in their favour as they progress to state duty.
"They are best friends, which is really nice,'' Kirsty said.
"They often sleep over at each other's house and talk a lot of hockey.
"Having each other to talk through any of the stuff with and rely on each other for support on the sideline is just amazing.
"They are both really grateful that they can do that together.''
Ipswich Girls' Grammar School student Lile has been chosen in the Queensland Embers team for the 2018 under-13 national titles in Hobart.
Lile has previously made a Queensland Schoolgirls team and was a shadow player for last year's Queensland under- 13 side.
St Mary's College student Hayley was named in the state under-13 Cinders team for her first Australian championships in October.
"This is her biggest tournament,'' Kirsty said of the looming nationals.
"She has worked really hard off the field and on the field.
"She's been doing some gym work and some running and fitness as well, which is really important for the goalkeepers that sometimes people forget.''
The 13-year-old girls played together in last Saturday's D-Grade mid-season final where Swifts shared the title with Wests after a 0-0 draw at the Ipswich Hockey Complex.
Lile and Hayley were chosen in their respective state teams after representing Ipswich at the recent Queensland under- 13 championships in Bundaberg.
Hayley was named goalkeeper of the tournament.
Kirsty was coach of the Ipswich number one team, highlighting her commitment to help hockey juniors at club and representative level.
While delighted with the progress of her daughter and niece, Kirsty said it was also fantastic for the Swifts club.
"Coming from Swifts, who only started juniors last season, to have two girls already representing Queensland is a pretty good result for us,'' she said.
"They are training and developing through Swifts and training with A-Grade now.
"Hopefully we can build on that.''
Hayley's dad Brett is also actively involved in Ipswich hockey as are many of the Len-aghan and Petersen family members. They will join Hayley and Lile in Hobart.