A golden week at the Copper Box for HC Knole Park

HC Knole Park’s U12, U14, U16 and U18 Girls all won gold medals at the Copper Box Indoor Championships in an unprecedented week of indoor hockey for the club! The U14 Boys won a fantastic silver medal as the top ranked club side in their competition and the Women’s VI also won a silver to add to this incredible medal haul. This is the first time HC Knole Park have been able to field sides from U10s to Adults, which is a success story itself!

In the U12 Girls competition the girls won their first two matches to qualify for the medal matches, defeating London Wayfarers 2-0 and Saffron Waldon 5-0. In the medal matches they then beat Hertford, 2-1, Old Georgians, 3-0, Sevenoaks, 3-0, and Cambridge City 5-0, to set up a final against Surbiton HC. A superb goal from Farrah Hilden gave the girls a 1-0 win and the title! Overall Hilden scored eight goals, and Emily Bingham scored seven goals.

The U14 Girls won two of their qualification group matches with 7-0 and 8-0 wins against Old Loughtonians and Berkhamsted HC respectively. This left the tightest match of the competition against invitational side, West Panthers, to decide who would go through to the medal matches. West Panthers are an all-star side from the West of England, and it was the West Panthers who took the lead.

However, a last-minute flick from Biba Mills secured the all-important draw and the girls progressed to play off for gold. In the first match of the medal stage, they struggled to capitalise on their chances having to settle for a 1-1 draw, but three superb wins against Surbiton, 2-0, and Sevenoaks, 5-2, and invitational National team UK Lions, 1-0, meant HC Knole Park won the gold! Biba Mills top scored with 15 goals. Evie Smith and Celia Foster both scored four goals each.

The U16 Girls stormed their competition to win gold. In their group matches they won all five matches, scoring 57 goals and only conceding once in the process. In the final they defeated fellow group winners Cambridge City 7-1. Olivia Breed and Lottie Bingham top scored with 24 and 20 goals respectively.

The U18 Girls completed the clean sweep for Knole Park as they also won gold! In the group stage they defeated Epsom, 6-0, Canterbury, 4-2, Cheltenham, 9-0. This meant they qualified for the medal matches. In the first match they defeated Sevenoaks 4-0. Two goals apiece from Annabel Cheveley and Amelie Allen gave the girls a great opportunity to win gold. Against Surbiton, a last-minute goal for Surbiton made it 2-2. This meant it would be a nervy wait to see the result of the Sevenoaks v Surbiton match.

Surbiton would need to win by five goals for gold and in a game that ebbed and flowed it finished 3-3 which meant Knole Park were crowned champions! Amelie Allen was on fire in front of goal, scoring 13 times. Annabel Cheveley scored 7 times.

In the Women’s competition it was another Knole Park goal fest as the team scored 43 matches and conceded just twice in the five-qualification group matches. In the final it wasn’t quite to be as the girls had to settle for a silver. Goals from Olivia Breed and Bella Muñoz made it 2-2 at the break, but the girls missed a few key chances at the start of the second half and were hit on the break to lose 5-3. Overall, Josefina Hippe top scored with 14 goals. Breed netted 11 times, and Anna Faulstich and Lottie Bingham scored 9 each.

The U10 Girls and U12 Boys also participated and finished 8th and 11th respectively. Relatively young sides in their competitions, they played some great hockey and will all play in the same age groups next season. Flo Muñoz top scored for the U10 Girls and Ted Burden top scored for the U12 Boys.

Duncan Parnis, HC Knole Park’s Director of Coaching, said: “This week has been incredible for everyone at HC Knole Park. To have been able to enter so many sides was fantastic, and the success of the teams was wonderful to see. Everyone works so hard in the background to make the hockey at HC Knole Park so enjoyable and aspirational; to see it all come together so well was a joy to behold. Many congratulations to every player, coach, and manager! You were all fantastic!”