Schmidt's succes with TRL silverware
THE Gatton Hawks have retained their 'lucky charm' for another season.
After a bumpy start to the season, Andrew Schmidt brought a wealth of success to the country club in the Toowoomba Rugby League competition.
As coach of both the Reserve Grade and Second Division sides, the former Hawks player secured four premierships including two minor and two majors.
Having already put his name forward to coach the Hawks Second Division side in 2017, Schmidt downplayed his successful double coaching role.
"You could say it was a perfect year,” he said. "I did the reserves the year before and when I took it again this year I thought I might as well take both. I was going to be there anyway so might as well.
"There was a lot of ups and downs over the year but we had a very good crew of players. They were a delight to coach.”
The Hawks didn't start the season as winners. Both sides went down early in the competition to the Warwick Cowboys which Schmidt said was the club's turning point.
"Even the way we started our first game wasn't great,” he said. "We went down to Warwick and lost both games. We were down on players and I think I only ran out with 11 players in the Second Division.
"But after that all the players started turning up and training. I think we only lost a couple for the rest of the season.”
It would take 18 weeks before the Hawks Reserve Grade players next tasted defeat at the hands of Toowoomba Valleys.
Crowned minor premiers at the end of the season, the Hawks got their revenge on Toowoomba with a 16-4 victory in the grand final. Schmidt's two sons Cory and Aiden were instrumental in the team's success
"It was the first time both of my lads have played together,” their father said. "Aiden came up from Under-18s to play halfback for us and Cory had been there a few years.”
With more than 100 points between them for the season, Corey scored two tries and made 33 conversions while his younger brother Aiden scored eight tries. Proud to have coached both sons to victory, Schmidt chuckled when asked about their attitude at home.
"Just like at training they don't listen to me much,” he laughed. "It has been good having them there this year.
"I've always played at Gatton and I've been coaching there for a few years now. It's a good club and you make a lot of friends. My wife Judy worked as the junior secretary for about ten years and now she does the seniors.”
Enjoying some well earned time off, the dual-premiership holder said he was looking forward to another successful year.
"This was a great year,” he said. "Next season will be a little different again because you always gain a few and lose a few players. Hopefully the main group will be back again. They know what to expect from me now.”