The Howick Pakuranga Hockey Club is the Auckland Club of the Year.
The club won the awards for the most successful men’s club, the most successful women’s club, leading to the award for being the most successful club in the 2018 season.
Finals weekend at Lloyd Elsmore pitted the top two teams in each division against each other to claim the Division title and it was a busy day for Howick Pakuranga.
Represented in eight finals with seven of the teams winning their grades through the round robin stages, some silverware was already in the cupboard.
The weekend got off to a winning start on Friday night with the premier girls and premier boys, coached by Black Sticks Dominic Newman and Sam Lane, beating opposition from Somerville in both finals. The boys won 2 -1 and the girls in a penalty shootout after the game ended in a draw.
This is where the future strength of the club lies and it is looking strong, a club spokesperson said.
Both teams gained inspiration from coaches who play at the highest level. They both headed the round robin competition and managed to win their finals. The championship boys team also came out winners 6–3 in their match against Roskill Eden to win the championship B grade.
The Saturday games saw the start of the senior team finals.
The division three women’s final matched two Howick Pakuranga teams against each other. The 3A team won the round robin but were beated by a goal in the final minutes by the 3B team to end a tight match with fierce competition.
The division two women then took up the challenge playing Somerville in a game that again went right down to the wire. Tied at full time, the game went to penalty shootouts. Eight seconds with a one on one with goalkeeper and the Division 2 ladies came out winners, clinching the shootout and the title.
The division one ladies came second in the season’s table only on goal difference and were looking for revenge and bragging rights. Again, playing Somerville, they came out strongly but the game ended in a nil-all draw and it was back to the penalty shootout. The Howick Pakuranga ladies won 1–0 in front of good support from the crowd.
The premier men’s team final saw Howick Pakuranga up against Roskill Eden.
Howick Pakuranga won the round robin in both the Intercity round one and the Auckland competition, but were up against a strong Roskill Eden team and knew that earlier season success counted for little.
After missing some early chances and going down to a couple of Roskill Eden goals, Howick Pakuranga couldn’t get enough pressure on the opposition and didn’t end the season in the way they would have liked, going down 6 -1.
Overall, this was one of the best season results that the premier men’s team has had and, with a good proportion of the team coming through the club ranks from the juniors, it is testament to the club structure and officials to have a team from the area competing at this level.
On the Sunday the men’s division four team had a great 5 – 0 victory against University to round off a successful finals weekend.
Howick Pakuranga also won the awards for the most successful men’s club, the most successful women’s club, leading to the award for being the most successful club in the 2018 season.
Diana Dowdle accepted the silverware and thanked the supporters, officials, coaches and managers who all contribute to the club’s success.