June 12, 2007
Last Saturday, June 09, Curacao's 1st school hockey tournament (organized by the Netherlands Antillean National Hockey Association, NAHA) went on its way proving to be a great success. Three local schools enrolled with 8 teams.
The school teams where pooled into 3 groups to battle out the winner for a handsome trophy.
"You give kids on Curacao a ball and a sticků they know what to do with it" Maaike Terpstra, NAHA's school hockey coordinator commented. And sure, all kids proved their enthusiasm and good hockey talents all the way through the tournament.
Players and participants were undoubtedly the winners but Albert Schweizer 2 took home the travel trophy based on maximum points and goals scored. It was certainly a great day of super youth hockey with many parents and teachers cheering for their teams." Seeing these kids having such fun and devotion tells me that we are doing the right thing for hockey development and the entire community here on our islands" NAHA's 'tournament director' Henk Pepping remarked. "Let there be no doubt, that NAHA will continue allocating utmost efforts and resources into the school hockey program. This is where it all starts!" he concluded.
A large number of volunteers from the different hockey clubs devoted their time and commitment to support a smooth tournament proceeding. Most kids were transported by school busses to the hockey field, one of the many services NAHA organized for this event. The tournament was generously sponsored by NAOC, Netherlands Antilles Olympic Committee, via funds allocated for the senior National Women Hockey Team. "There is a direct link of what our National Teams are currently doing on international stage and our youth development initiatives. It's all inter-connected and part of a bigger picture" Robert Wellens, NAHA's PR coordinator stated.
To start with, the school hockey tournament will be a bi-annual fixture on NAHA's event calendar. Special appreciation goes to all participating schools, the involved school head masters and teachers as well as parents for keeping the ball rolling on their school grounds.