Easts' D and C-Grade talent Tom Savage dives into his work during Saturday's grand final win over Norths/Bellbowrie.
Easts' D and C-Grade talent Tom Savage dives into his work during Saturday's grand final win over Norths/Bellbowrie. Cordell Richardson

Double elation for A-Grade Player of the Year

IPSWICH A-Grade Player of the Year Kyle Sippel was a happy clubman after his latest season honour.

However, it wasn't only his senior team accolade that had the popular player all smiles.

Sippel emerged from a winning D-Grade dressing room just as elated less than 24 hours after his Ipswich Hockey award.

The Tigers' A-Grade captain was proud of his undefeated team and the club's achievement following his side's 11-0 victory over Norths/Bellbowrie at the Ipswich Hockey Complex on Saturday.

"Basically we played really good hockey all season . . . and they played out of the skin again today,'' Sippel said.

The Easts' team were among the association's leading goal-scorers with 121 throughout the season.

"We actually lose about seven of them (to C Grade) so a credit to the Norths' guys who are all a young team.''

Sippel took on the junior coaching role for the first time as part of his senior team leadership responsibilities.

He thoroughly enjoyed the experience, supported by hard-working Easts' A-Grade coach Tom Cook and club president Paul Malcolm.

"I can't wait a few more years until they are taking my spot in A-Grade,'' Sippel said, praising Easts' outstanding junior development work.

"It (coaching) is actually really surprisingly rewarding.

"I actually will miss it in the off-season and I'm going to have to try and convince the wife to let me do it again next year.''


C grade mens hockey final between Norths and Easts.
Easts' goal scorer Lachlan Savage. Cordell Richardson

As a regular in Ipswich A-Grade, Sippel reinforced the terrific skills development work put into the boys.

"I'm a big believer in just doing the basic stuff right,'' he said. "You can be the most skilled player on the field but if you can't throw a pass, make a trap and play as a team then it's no point having you.''

Sippel said the Easts' coaches were working together as "a really good team'', highlighted by his side's win being the third title of the day.

"The E-Grade (Jay Currie and Paul Malcolm), D-Grade (Sippel) and C-Grade (Josh Jones) coaches are all helping each other out,'' Sippel said.

"We play very similar styles so it's really good.''

Easts' centre half Thomas Savage was named his team's Player of the Final.


C grade mens hockey final between Norths and Easts.
Riley Anderson (Easts) and Stefano Spall (Norths/Bellbowrie) battle for the ball in the C-Grade grand final. Cordell Richardson

Norths/Bellbowrie captain Matthew Bell received the honour for his side.

Although his team won handsomely, Sippel paid tribute to the momentum the developing Norths/Bellbowrie team created in qualifying for the grand final.

"I was honestly a little bit concerned the way Norths came through,'' he said.

"I was hoping for a concise win but they actually played really well in the first quarter.''

A first-half hat-trick by Lachlan McDermott-Parkes set the tone as the Tigers lifted when needed, before rolling to a memorable win.