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Team Selection

Selection trials for the ACT schools team commenced with the SSACT Golf Championship which was held at Queanbeyan Golf Club on March 21. At the conclusion of this event, all students who registered for team selection had their performances monitored over a three month period. After a number of local events including the Gungahlin Junior Classic, Queanbeyan Junior Open, Junior Club Pennants, and going on performances at the Australian Junior Series in Tasmania the final SSACT team was selected.

The final team selected to represent the ACT was:

Brett Levier (c) (Calwell High School)           Luka Brucic (St John Paul II)            

David Howard (Canberra High School)         Adam Thorp (Radford)

Tom O’Rourke (Radford)                               Lachlan Chamberlain (Stromlo High School)

Amber Thornton (c) (St Mary Mackillop)       Eleanor Bance (Brindabella)

Isabelle Hawes (Telopea Park School)         Cassandra Linares (Girls Grammar)

Molly Perren-Leveridge (Merici)                    Taylah Ellems (Merici)

As a means to reducing costs for players, letters were sent to district golf clubs and associations in the ACT region seeking financial/equipment support for the players. The generous response from the ACT golf community was fantastic and helped to reduce costs significantly.

The following clubs / organisations / individuals generously provided support which was greatly appreciated by the team:

  • Federal Golf Club                               Central Southern Golf Association    
  • Gungahlin Lakes Golf Club                Royal Canberra Golf Club                             
  • Jack Newton Junior Golf                    Belconnen Magpies Golf Club
  • RMC Golf Club                                  Queanbeyan Golf Club
  • Gold Creek Golf Club                         Brindabella Christian College
  • NSW Golf Club                                  Drummond Golf
  • Yowani Country Club                       

Thanks are extended to Dawn Manning and Paula Anderson (Central Southern Golf Association) for their assistance with financial support and efforts to ensure the girls wore blazers for the championships.

Thank you to Cam Sullings and Peter Gray from Federal Golf Club who provided many opportunities for their juniors to raise funds.

The team exclusively used Titleist PRO V1 golf balls and Titleist caps that were generously provided by Jack Newton Junior Golf. JNJG has supported the team for a number of years now and is thanked for their continued generosity. Thank you to Sue Harrison for making this possible.

Thanks also to the ACT Monaro District Golf Association for providing guidance and support with local event results and player details. Thank you to Gail Goiser for her assistance organising blazers for the boys.

School Sport Australia Championship

Venue: Goolwa 14 – 19 August 2016

Opening Ceremony

The opening ceremony took place in a function room at the South Lakes Golf Club. It was an opportunity for students to meet each other, meet the organising committee and practice on the range, putting greens and course. South Lakes Golf Club put on dinner for all people in attendance.

Individual Stroke Play Competition Results

The 36 hole stroke event was also held at South Lakes Golf Club. The course had narrow fairways surrounded by a large number of fairway and greenside bunkers and small greens, ensuring the students hit thoughtful and accurate shots from tee to green. The course layout challenged the student's and shot selection and fitness especially as the conditions were sunny and windy. Newcomers Lachlan Chamberlain and Tom O’Rourke were the best placed boys with 155. Amber Thornton was the best placed girl with 1. Congratulations to Taylah Ellems who performed outstandingly to take out the bronze medal in the girls’ nett event.

The ACT boys came 6th and girls 6th in the teams overall stroke.

Teams Event – Stroke (Best 4 scores to count for each round)


1st        NSW - 572

2nd       QLD - 599

2nd       WA - 605

4th        VIC - 606

5th        SA - 609     

6th        ACT - 619


1st        VIC - 620

2nd       QLD - 631

3rd        NSW - 634

4th        WA - 645

5th        SA - 671     

6th        ACT - 733

Educational Excursion

The educational excursion took place on Wednesday and incorporated a river cruise from Goolwa through the Coorong National Park to the mouth of the Murray River. Students were educated on ecosystems and how New South Wales, Victorian and South Australian governments have pooled their resources to preserve the Murray mouth. The Murray River feeds into many rivers through these states and benefits many flora, fauna and farmers around the Murray region. Our cruise took us through a barrage which separates the freshwater from the saltwater. Students understood the importance of allowing flow of water both ways through the barrage. The students were educated on the birdlife through the Coorong and had many encounters with fur seals. Students were provided an opportunity to hop off the boast at the Murray mouth and walk around the beach and sand dunes surrounding the area.

Match Play Competition Results

The SSA Golf Championships in Goolwa was an excellent opportunity for the ACT players to further test their skills against talented opposition from around Australia. The South Lakes, Victor Harbour and McCracken Golf Clubs on the Fleurieu Peninsula provided challenging courses and allowed the ACT players to refine and apply different skills over the week. Weather conditions during the week had a mix of warm, cold and cyclonic winds. There was some wet weather but not enough to make it too uncomfortably for the players.

The local clubs and golf community of the ACT were of great support to the team in 2016. Financial support was provided to help offset costs for parents. Equipment in the way of golf balls and caps were also provided to the team. Each team member’s home club helped out financially.

Overall, the boys and girls both finished sixth in the teams stroke and teams match play events. The boy’s highlight of the match play event was hitting form on the last day of competition and squaring the match with Western Australia. In the stroke event, debutants Lachlan Chamberlain and Tom O’Rourke lead the way for the boys both shooting 155. The girls highlight was debutants Cassie Linares, Taylah Ellems and Molly Perren-Leveridge all winning matches during the week. Taylah Ellems finished with the bronze medals in the girls’ nett competition. It was a developing team that travelled this year with 7 of the 12 students new to the School Sport Australia event.

The team were excellent ambassadors for their families, schools, clubs and School Sport ACT and demonstrated exceptional sportsmanship. It was noted by convenors, managers and spectators how well the ACT team conducted themselves on the golf course. Brett Levier and Amber Thornton were the captains of the boys and girls teams, and displayed fantastic encouragement, public speaking and leadership skills over the week. It was our pleasure to be involved with these teams.

Chris Jones & Alison Kirkpatrick

SSACT Boys & Girls Managers 

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